Business owner admits illegal storage of waste

Ratcliffe pled guilty at Dumfries Sheriff Court

A SCOTS firm has pled guilty to breaking environmental laws.

Ashley Ratcliffe, of business AJR Commercials in Kirkpatrick Fleming, Dumfries, admitted the charge at Dumfries Sheriff Court today..

Ratcliffe, 41,admitted two offences under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, namely; failing to remove controlled waste from the site, and keeping the waste on land without a waste management licence between 8 September 2009 and 19 April 2011.

This prosecution followed a focused operation by SEPA aimed at bringing unlicensed ‘end-of-life’ vehicle (ELV) businesses into compliance with environmental legislation.

The accused stored waste motor vehicles and parts, tyres, engines, carpets, metal, plastic, oil drums and gas bottles on his land.

Kate Fleming, Specialist Wildlife and Environmental Prosecutor for COPFS, said: “There is a legitimate public concern about the impact of offences like this on the environment.

“Waste vehicles contain various fluids including oil, washer fluid, batteries and their fluid, coolant, power steering and brake fluid, all of which can contaminate the environment.

“The purpose of environmental regulations is to ensure that polluting componants are disposed of properly.

“Mr Ratcliffe repeatedly ignored advice and offers of assistance from SEPA. He was given ample time to bring his property into compliance with environmental laws but chose not to.

“COPFS takes a robust approach to any individual or company which choses to ignore the laws which are in place to protect Scotland’s environment.”