Eight-month prison sentence for operating illegal waste site

Commercial Motor
April 24, 2017


An operator who illegally stored and disposed of thousands of tonnes of waste on his Kent site has been sent to prison for eight months.

John Millen, who trades as 
KM Millen Grab Hire, was sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court after pleading guilty to using his site in Gas Road, Sittingbourne, for illegal waste transfers.

Charges had been brought against him in December 2014, after an Environment Agency investigation established more than 40,000 tonnes of construction and demolition waste had been illegally deposited on the site.

Millen had an exemption to allow him to store a limited amount of waste, but the waste found far exceeded this.

Millen was given until the 
end of March 2015 to clear the waste. However, the court heard none of the waste had been removed by this time and Millen continued to crush, treat and deposit waste.

The Environment Agency argued Millen’s activities were in clear breach of the law and would have required an environmental permit. This was a permit Millen did not apply for, thereby avoiding significant costs to his business.

Environment Agency environment manager Alan Cansdale said: “Mr Millen was fully aware he was not allowed to store that amount of waste on the site but continued to accept more construction and demolition waste while ignoring the advice and guidance issue to him by Environment Agency officers. His actions put the environment at risk.”

Cansdale added one of the reasons prosecutions were brought in cases like this was because of the effect illegal operations can have on companies that stick to the 

He said: “Where illegal operations are connected to licensed businesses we have no hesitation in prosecuting those involved. We want to make 
sure that waste crime doesn’t pay.”

Passing his sentence, the 
judge said Millen was the “controlling mind” of the business and had ignored all advice offered by the Environment Agency about his business operations.

By David Harris

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Commercial Motor

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