$6,500 fine for illegal dumping

Media release
A Jandakot man has been fined $6,500 and ordered to pay costs for dumping a trailer-load of rubbish in a bush reserve.
Last updated: 25 August 2021

On Friday 12 February 2021, covert surveillance cameras recorded 48-year-old Michael Manuel Rocha driving a black Kia Sorento towing a trailer containing waste into Torgoyle Reserve, Wattleup. 

Surveillance cameras recorded him leaving with an empty trailer a short time later. 

The site is under the management and control of the City of Cockburn and is a federally protected banksia woodland with significant environmental value. 

Last week in Fremantle Magistrates Court, Magistrate Peter Malone noted the environmental significance of the area and imposed a fine of $6,500 with costs of $418.70. 

City of Cockburn Environmental Supervisor Matthew Kennewell urged people to dispose of their rubbish correctly.  
“Visiting the Henderson Waste Recovery Park is much cheaper than going to court and paying thousands of dollars in fines,” Mr Kennewell said.  
“The City and the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER) deploy covert cameras in common dumping areas and members of our community are growing more vigilant, reporting dumpers when they see them in action."
“It costs the City a lot of money to remove waste illegally dumped in our bushland and on road verges, where it becomes a fire and safety hazard for people and wildlife.” 
DWER Senior Manager Waste Operations, Matt Warnock said officers would continue to use advanced surveillance methods to target illegal dumping. 

“We ask anyone who witnesses illegal dumping to provide details to the department’s Pollution Watch Hotline on 1300 784 782 or email pollutionwatch@dwer.wa.gov.au or CrimestoppersWA,” he said. 

“We can then keep that area under surveillance to catch and prosecute offenders through the courts.”