A PAIR of Worcestershire men have been fined a total of £20,000 after admitting illegally burying waste near Droitwich.

Colin Parsons and Terry Jacobs appeared at Redditch Magistrates Court on Monday, January 27 where they pleaded guilty to the charges relating to an unlicensed waste facility in West Lodge Farm, Upton Warren.

Parsons, aged 69, admitted operating a waste facility without an environmental permit while Jacobs, aged 44, pleaded guilty to knowingly permitting the operation of a regulated facility without an environmental permit.

The court heard the Environment Agency had received a call in July 2011 from a member of the public concerned about a large scale landfill operation operated by Colin Parsons and Sons in a rural area with no permit for waste management activities.

The land was owned by Jacobs, from Redditch, who had received payment for the burial of waste at the site between July and October 2011. Parsons, from Kidderminster, had hired excavating equipment and a wagon to transport waste to the field.

Environment Agency officers visited the site in August 2011 and found a large area with black plastic bags and plastic sticking out of the ground and large pile of soil to the side. Plant machinery on the site was traced back to Parsons and, when officers returned to the site the next month, they found the roughly 52 metre square area had been covered over and seeded.

Officers returned to the site accompanied by police the next month and dug trenches, uncovering a mix of waste material including window frames, glass, plastic, rubber and fabric.

Jacobs was questioned two weeks later while police interviewed Parsons in April 2012. Both men were questioned again in October 2012.

In November 2012 Parsons was served with a notice under Section 59 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 requiring all waste to be removed from the site by February 15 2013, but he failed to comply.

Speaking after the case, an Environment Agency spokesman said: “The defendants have been uncooperative throughout the investigation.

“By burying or allowing the burying of waste they are risking damage to the environment and undercutting legitimate businesses for their own financial gain.

“This prosecution demonstrates that we take waste crime very seriously and will not hesitate to prosecute if necessary, to protect the environment and local communities.”

Both men were fined £4,000 and ordered to pay £6,000 costs as well as a £15 victim surcharge.