Posted: 22.02.21 at 18:27 by The Editor
POLICE and council officers mounted a stop and check operation in Crewe as part of a Cheshire-wide operation tackling waste crime.
More than 20 people are being investigated after vehicles and firms suspected of involvement in the illegal disposal or management of waste were targeted through last week.
Over 100 vehicles, spotted via ANPR cameras, were pulled over and stop checks were performed next to busy routes to check if waste transporters had licences and paperwork.
More than 50 tickets were issued for a range of offences and more than 10 vehicles were seized.
Cheshire Police 's Rural Crime Team led the operation, codenamed Operation Permits, in collaboration with the Environment Agency and Cheshire East Council, Cheshire West and Chester Council and Warrington Borough Council.
Sgt. Rob Simpson, of the Rural Crime Team, said: “Waste crime causes significant environmental and public health problems, blights local communities and drains the UK economy of hundreds of millions of pounds a year in clean-up costs and lost tax revenues.
"Those involved in waste crime are often involved in other serious criminal activity, including large scale fraud and in some cases modern slavery.
“We have been liaising with the Environment Agency to identify and tackle organised crime groups and anyone else who breaks the law by conducting unlicensed collection, transportation and disposal of waste, including toxic waste.
“The operation was a success and we will continue to target those who use our roads to commit waste crime.”
Stop and checks were also carried out at Warrington, Chester, Macclesfield and Northwich.
Both large and small-scale fly-tipping was targeted.
Cllr Mick Warren, Cabinet member for communities at Cheshire East Council, said: “Illegal waste disposal is a serious offence, which can lead to a maximum £50,000 fine and prison."
Nigel Glasgow, Cheshire’s Environment Agency area manager, said: “We would like to remind all householders they have a duty of care to check that anyone taking away their waste is registered as a waste carrier with the Environment Agency.
“There are some tell-tale signs to be mindful of when dealing with a waste operator. Is the waste business only advertising on social media? Are the rates significantly cheaper? Are they insisting on being paid in cash only? These are some of the signs for a business operating illegally."
Anyone with concerns about illegal or suspicious activity should contact the police on 101. Environmental incidents can be reported to the Environment Agency on 0800 807060.”
People can report fly-tipping or other waste crime here.