Prison for Tyre Dumping Ex-Policeman
A former Police inspector faces a year in prison for his role in the dumping of 175,000 tyres. Geraint Evans, who retired from the Police in 2005, was one of three people sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court on April 8 for illegally disposing of tyres at sites in England and Wales. Also sentenced were Norman Cassidy, who received an eight-month prison sentence, and Evans’ partner Marilyn Hanks, who has been ordered to perform 240 hours of community service.
“You are thoroughly unscrupulous men with no regard whatsoever for the financial consequences of those you exploit,” commented Judge Stephen Hopkins QC, referring to Evans and Cassidy. “You were deliberately dealing in waste without a licence for purely financial reason and it’s had a substantial impact on the community.”
Evans’ connection with the tyre industry began in 1991, while he was still a service police officer. Upon his retirement he attempted to begin a career in the tyre recycling sector, however he was declared bankrupt.
The trio dumped tyres at sites in Hirwaun, south Wales, Manchester and Colchester in Essex. Their arrest followed a six-month investigation carried out by Environment Agency Wales, who acted upon an anonymous tip-off. Some 100,000 tyres are still being stored at the Hirwaun site, awaiting recycling or the site owner paying for them to be disposed of legally.
The court was told that Evans, Cassidy and Hanks did not have a waste management licence for any of the premises, did not pay rent at the sites and made about £115,000 over 18 months.
Evans pleaded guilty to five counts of unauthorised depositing and keeping of controlled waste. Hanks admitted two counts of assisting or conniving in offences by a corporate body. Cassidy pleased guilty to four counts of unauthorised depositing and keeping of controlled waste. The judge stated that defendants will serve half of the prison sentence that he has imposed, and then be released on licence.
Following the court proceedings Environment Agency director for Wales Chris Mills commented that this was the first time such a case had resulted in a prison sentence. “This was a really large scale criminal investigation,” he said. “It resulted in significant financial loss both to legitimate waste operators and to the warehouse owners and it posed a significant fire threat to the community and indeed a threat to the environment.”