Residents ignored by a fly-tipper dumping rubbish near their homes had the last laugh after video footage they secretly shot helped result in a successful prosecution.
Paul Proud, 51, of Whyman Avenue, Chatham had been due to stand trial on Monday, 15 July after pleading not guilty to a charge of being in control of a vehicle used in a fly-tipping incident, but changed his plea before the hearing.
He was fined £200 by North Kent Magistrates for dumping rubbish on an access way to a farmer’s field in High Halstow just before noon on Friday, 25 May 2012 . He was also ordered to pay £1,000 in costs and a £15 victim surcharge.
North Kent Magistrates Court heard how a resident whose property backed on to the field had seen a man throwing vehicle tyres into a ditch, from the back of a red flat bed truck.
While witnessing the incident the resident challenged the man, asking, ‘What do you think this is – a rubbish tip?’ to which he replied, ‘Yes, I do actually’. But the resident had the last word, the court heard, having set his CCTV camera to record.
Around the same time another resident used her mini-cam video recorder to film Proud leave his vehicle, move to the rear of the truck and throw what appeared to be black refuse bags into the ditch. The incident was reported and both recordings were handed to Medway Council.
On Wednesday, 13 June 2012 Medway Council’s Environmental Enforcement Team spotted a vehicle dropping off scrap items at a recycling depot on the Medway City Estate. The truck matched the description given by the neighbours.
Vehicle checks by the council and Kent Police resulted in Proud being called in for interview. He initially denied being the owner of the vehicle and when shown the video footage questioned if it showed anything being dumped.
Cllr Peter Hicks, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety and Customer Contact, said: “Our thanks go out to these two residents whose community spirit helped bring this fly-tipper to book.
“The attitude shown, when challenged, shows the complete disregard he had not only for the appearance of the area, but the opinion of people who care about their neighbourhood.
“Fly tipping is a menace and costs the council millions each year to clear. We are determined to stamp it out. It is unacceptable. Anyone caught will be prosecuted.”