Tayside and Central Scotland

Illegal waste tip farmer faces £1.8m bill

Falkirk Sheriff Court
Image caption Graham will be sentenced at Falkirk Sheriff Court next year

A farmer who allowed people to dump waste on his land is facing a £1.8m bill, a court was told.

David Graham, 69, admitted running an illegal tip on farmland at Doghill, near Denny, in Stirlingshire.

Prosecutors want to retrieve the money under the Proceeds of Crime Act claiming that Graham benefited by £1.8m by not building a proper site.

Graham's solicitor said that his client's profits, if any, did not amount to that sum.

Falkirk Sheriff Court was told that Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) inspectors found more than 400 tonnes of waste on the site between June 2011 and October 2013.

The court heard that Graham should have held a licence for waste disposal activities, and to do so would have meant building and operating a proper landfill site at at estimated cost of £1.8 million.

Graham, of Dunipace, Stirlingshire, admitted four charges under the 1990 Environmental Protection Act.

The Proceeds of Crime Act allows recovery of assets from criminals such as drug dealers, but it can also be used to pursue business owners who profit by avoiding environmental legislation.

Sheriff Derek Livingstone continued the case until 19 January for a pre-proof hearing under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Sentence on Graham for the four charges was deferred to await the outcome.

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