By Denna Bowman
A businessman has been jailed after he admitted dumping thousands of old tyres, because the cost of disposing of them legally was too high to make a profit.
Father-of-two Mark Watts, who stored at least 42,500 worn tyres at his then home at Abercynllaith, Penybont, near Oswestry and a second site at Broad Oak Farm, Whitchurch, was jailed for a year by Mold Crown Court.
Judge Niclas Parry said: “You made a conscious, deliberate decision to flout the laws, which you knew were there to protect human health and the environment.”
The judge said the disposal of waste tyres was a huge environmental problem.
He added: “You ignored warnings and flagrantly disregarded notices and continued to offend.”
The court heard that although Watts had no previous convictions, he had previously walked away from an illegal plastic recycling operation in Staffordshire leaving the landowner to pick up the bill for clearing the site.
Watts, 42, had gained a substantial and unfair advantage over legitimate competitors who worked with the law.
Watts, 42, admitted two charges of illegally dumping tyre and two charges of failing to remove them in 2008 and 2009.
Jonathan Salmon, prosecuting for the Environment Agency, said Watts admitted the offences in Wrexham Magistrates’ Court last summer.
Watts had operated a tyre disposal company with a very similar name to a national waste company to give it “a veneer of respectability”.
Charles Hanmer, defending, said that Watts was operating on such tight margins that it was difficult for him to make a profit and could not cover the costs of operating legitimately.