Environment Agency
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Pair who ran illegal waste site in Bacup served prison sentence

A father and son have been sentenced for operating an illegal waste site in Lancashire, following an investigation by the Environment Agency.

Father and son duo Paul and Benjamin Harrison, who ran an illegal waste site in Bacup, have been sentenced to time in prison in a case brought by the Environment Agency. 

Paul Harrison, 51, of Rochdale Road, Bacup, Lancashire, and Benjamin Harrison, 22, also of Rochdale Road, Bacup, appeared at Preston crown court on 13 May, in relation to them operating an illegal waste site.

The Environment Agency found that they had caused unacceptable risks to the environment. Both individuals previously pleaded guilty to failing to apply for a permit, as required by law.  

Paul Harrison was sentenced to 10 months’ imprisonment, suspended for 18 months, and ordered to undertake 150 hours of unpaid work.

Benjamin Harrison was sentenced to eight months’ imprisonment, suspended for 18 months, and ordered to undertake 150 hours of unpaid work.

Thousands of tonnes of waste tipped illegally

An extensive investigation by the Environment Agency established that many thousands of tonnes of waste was brought onto the site at The Farm, Rochdale Road, Bacup, and tipped illegally. This included significant quantities of household waste and contaminated excavation waste.  

Despite numerous warnings from Environment Agency officers, no environmental permit was applied for. This meant that no environmental controls, that would have been in place at an appropriately permitted facility, were present.

This allowed Paul and Benjamin Harrison to undercut legitimate businesses who work hard to protect the environment.  

Sentence for separate offence

At the same time as this sentencing, Paul Harrison was sentenced in another case brought by Rossendale Borough Council. He was found guilty with another defendant of depositing waste on Futures Park, Bacup, without the required environmental permit.  

Harrison received an additional eight months’ imprisonment for this offence, bringing his total sentence to 18 months imprisonment and 150 hours of unpaid work. 

An Environment Agency spokesperson said:    

We are glad to see the outcome of this prosecution. We gave extensive advice and guidance but despite this, both Paul and Benjamin Harrison failed to register for the relevant permits and accepted further waste onto site.

Illegal waste sites like this undermine legitimate businesses, undercut their prices, and blight the environment. We will continue to work tirelessly to tackle environmental crime and we are committed to ensuring that appropriate environmental standards are adhered to.

I would urge everyone to check that a waste site is licenced before using them by checking the public register online at GOV.uk.

If people suspect criminal activity, they should report it to our 24-hour incident hotline 0800 807060 or anonymously through CrimeStoppers on 0800 555111 and give as much detail as possible. Let’s work together to stamp out waste crime and protect our beautiful countryside.  

Make sure your business is legal and check you have the right permit for your activities: https://www.gov.uk/topic/environmental-management/waste

Channel website: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/environment-agency

Original article link: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/pair-who-ran-illegal-waste-site-in-bacup-served-prison-sentence

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