Scottish farmer faces £1.8 million fine for waste crimes

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Sepa found 400 tonnes of waste on the farmer’s land in Stirlingshire

A farmer who used his land to operate an illegal waste dumping ground could face costs of up to £1.8 million following prosecution by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa), which wants to claim money under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

David Graham, 69, used his farmland in Doghill, Stirlingshire, as an illegal tip. Mr Graham is said to have profited from his illegal waste activity, which allowed individuals to dump waste on his land.

Scottish farmer could face a bill of £1.8m following waste crime sentencing

Falkirk Sheriff Court. Photo: © Copyright Sandy Gemmill

Investigators from Sepa found over 400 tonnes of waste at Mr Graham’s Doghill site between June 2011 and October 2013.

In Falkirk Sheriff Court, the defendant pleaded guilty to the charges brought against him under the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

Prosecutors acting on behalf of Sepa are seeking to claim up to £1.8m from Mr Graham under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Sepa claims that the farmer saved approximately this amount by operating the tip illegally instead of applying for a license and setting up a legitimate site which would meet with Sepa’s environmental standards.

However, the Mr Graham’s solicitor told the court that his client did not profit by £1.8m from his illegal tip. His solicitor hinted that his client had hardly profited at all from his criminal activity.

Sheriff Derek Livingstone postponed the criminal proceeds hearing until January 19, on which date the prosecution team must provide proof of Mr Graham’s profiting.

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