Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) has successfully prosecuted a man who dumped tonnes of concrete by roadsides across Melbourne.
The EPA-led investigation followed collaboration by multiple government agencies, media and assistance provided by members of the public leading to the win at the Magistrates Court on Tuesday (23 Feb)
Kashyap Shingari plead guilty on multiple counts of illegal dumping of concrete slabs at roadside locations around Melbourne. He was fined $50,000, placed on a two year community corrections order to perform 300 hours of community service and must pay the costs incurred by Casey and Mornington Councils in removing the concrete slabs in addition to EPA’s legal costs.
Magistrate Richard Pithouse described the offending as “extraordinary” and commented that “If there was a power under the Act…I would jail you for an extended period of time.”
The Magistrate emphasised that “the message has to get out to the community that you do not dump rubbish.”
EPA CEO Lee Miezis said there would be no tolerance for such behaviour and that the investigation had been highly innovative. In what EPA believes is a first time for the organisation, through the Victorian Courts, EPA was able to secure a warrant to arrest Shingari with Victoria Police. He was arrested and bailed to appear at Court with a condition of his bail was that he was not able to attend any points of international departure and his passport surrendered.
The case underlined the importance of community involvement in detecting and prosecuting illegal dumping. Information and assistance had come from councils including Mornington, Casey, Kingston, Maroondah, Dandenong and Frankston, government agencies including VicRoads, Victoria Police and Victorian Building Authority as well as assistance from the concrete batching industry and the general public, which was helped by the Mornington Peninsula News and 3AW’s Neil Mitchell program.
“We have zero tolerance for this kind of behaviour and we are glad to be able to see this through to a successful prosecution. It is a great example of law enforcement agencies, local councils and the media working together to get a great outcome.”
Mr Miezis said he was grateful to all the agencies involved for their cooperation and assistance.
If you see pollution call EPA on 1300 EPA VIC (1300 372842)