Derbyshire fly-tipper’s “breathtaking” scale of offending leads to jail term

Southern Derbyshire Magistrates Court in Derby.
Southern Derbyshire Magistrates Court in Derby.

An Ilkeston man has been jailed after offering ‘tip runs’ through Facebook and then disposing of the waste by fly-tipping it across Derbyshire.

District Judge Taft said the scale of offending by Richard Oakey was “breathtaking”, as he sentenced him at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates’ Court to 30 weeks in prison.

Oakey, 31, of King Street, admitted ten offences which were committed across Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire between July and November last year.

District Judge Taft said: “These are serious offences which deserve the imposition of a custodial sentence. There was a prolonged period of activity and the activity was carried out for economic gain.

“This is not a victimless crime, there were those who paid for your services and the community at large.

“There is a scourge of fly-tipping in the country. The clear up costs amount to thousands of pounds for councils, provide a visual eyesore for members of the public and affects the daily quality of life.”

The prosecution followed an 18-month investigation by Amber Valley Borough Council, working with Erewash Borough Council, Derbyshire Dales District Council and Ashfield District Council.

Amber Valley council said officers investigated seven fly-tipping offences in the borough and assisted the other councils with their investigations. All involved Oakey advertising on Facebook a service, that he referred to as ‘tip runs’.

He advertised under different names including Rich O’Shea and Rich Stevens. He charged for this service and was technically running a business. He attended addresses in his private vehicle, collected waste, then disposed of it by fly-tipping across Derbyshire.

Oakey attended two interviews under caution and denied the offences, stating he did not fly-tip the waste but accepted that he had collected the waste. He admitted to a number of the victims that he had fly-tipped the waste and evidence of this was put to him in interview, but he refused to answer those questions.

The clear-up costs for all the councils totalled some £2,939.60.

District Judge Taft said: “You have significant convictions which are a matter of dishonesty, and you have been dishonest and shown a breach of trust; firstly, by obtaining wages whilst not declaring them to the benefits agencies; secondly, advertising on Facebook and in a position whereby you used different names and implied you would deal with waste properly and legitimately; thirdly, whilst under investigation you carried on offending.

He added: “The message is that if you fly-tip you run the real prospect of going into custody. Councils will investigate and this court will back them up.”

Oakey’s sentence included a Criminal Behaviour Order which restricts him from advertising waste services or collecting waste unless in possession of a valid licence, or disposing of waste at any location other than a designated waste and recycling centre.

He must also serve a period of supervision by the probation service and pay an £80 victim surcharge.