Man convicted of large scale dumping at Kildare forest

Almost €4,000 in fines and costs to be paid by Kildare town man

By Leinster Leader Reporter

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Man convicted of large scale dumping at Kildare forest

Evidence of the dumping at south Kildare forest area

A man has been fined €1,000 and ordered to pay costs of €2,900 after being convicted for littering a public wood land area in south Athy.

William Pearson, with an address at 3526 Bishopsland, Kildare town, appeared at the January 7, sitting of Naas District Court.

He was convicted of dumping large quantities of waste under Section 3.1 of the the Litter Pollution Act 1997 on two days in late 2017.

He was found guilty of dumping the material at the forest at Blackwood, Athy, on November 10, and the following day, November 11.

Judge Desmond Zaidan was shown photographs of the dumped material, which was taken during Kildare County Council investigations into the matter. The area in question is a public area.

Seamus Boyle, solicitor, representing Mr Pearson, said his client accepted responsibility for his action.

Mr Boyle said he was transporting furniture for a relative on the basis it would be dumped.

Mr Boyle said Mr Pearson did not get paid for this particular job, but his client was “doing this type of nixer no longer”.

His client could not afford a waste licence, it was too expensive.

Cairbre Finan, prosecuting solicitor for Kildare County Council, said this was “large scale” dumping.

The court was told that the dumping was near one of the main entrances to the forest.

The court heard the maximum fine for the offence is €4,000 and that Mr Pearson had no previous convictions for littering.

Judge Zaidan asked why defendant had done this. “If you had done it the right way it would not have cost an arm and a leg,”  said the judge.

The judge asked if the relatives he had helped would share the cost with him.

Mr Boyle said Mr Pearson, who works in stock-taking with a €400 net income a week, is “taking the hit.”

Judge Zaidan fined the defendant €1,000 for the offence and ordered him to pay €2,900 clean-up costs, a total of €3,900.

The €1,000fine  is to be paid into the Court Service and the €2,900 to Kildare County Council.

Mr Boyle said Mr Pearson, who was also paying maintenance out of his income,  was willing to pay the money back in €200 a month installments.

Judge Zaidan said that, strictly speaking, it should be paid in six months but in the circumstances he would allow it to be paid over 12 months. But he told Mr Pearson, who was also granted free legal aid,  that if he defaulted on a payment, the County Council would have liberty to re-enter the case.