Discount retailer Trago Mills has had its fine for illegally dumping and burning thousands of tonnes of waste halved by Exeter Crown Court
The southwest-based company appealed the fine of £185,000 imposed by magistrates in September 2011 after pleading guilty to five offences under the Environment Protection Act 1990.
An Environment Agency investigation in 2009 revealed that the company had dumped more than 6,000 tonnes of waste, including hazardous materials such as asbestos, in illegal landfills in the Devon countryside at its Newton Abbot site and unlawfully burned more waste at its centre in Liskeard, Cornwall. However, the firm claimed senior managers at the sites did not know of the breaches.
After reviewing the original sentence and hearing that the company had incurred clean-up costs of £475,000 in addition to the financial penalty imposed at the earlier hearing, Judge Cottle reduced the fine to £65,000. Prosecution costs of £14,588 remain unchanged. The judge said he would give his reasons later in writing.