Repeat asbestos dumper fined in court

Media release
A 35-year-old Kewdale man was fined $3,500 in Midland Magistrates Court today, after being caught on camera dumping asbestos-laden demolition rubble at an eastern suburbs housing estate.
surveillance pictures of dumping incident happening, and the resultant pile of rubble

The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation’s (DWER) investigation found Hyuksu (Jamie) Lee dumped a tip truck load on three occasions—on Kingia Place, Goldsbrough Entrance and Darwinia Crescent in Helena Valley—between 31 January and 1 February 2018.

As well as the fine, Magistrate Kevin Tavener ordered the defendant to pay $4,500 in clean-up costs to the Shire of Mundaring and court costs of $328.

DWER’s Senior Manager Waste Operations Matt Warnock said the penalty should send a strong warning to other would-be offenders.

“We will take action and prosecute those doing the wrong thing in our community,” he said.

“This offender dumped asbestos right out the front of family homes—something that can be dangerous.”

Kingia Place resident Ash Byatt said he welcomed the outcome.

“This incident made me pretty angry, given asbestos and rubble was dumped right out the front of our family home where we’ve got two children under the age of seven, and all of our neighbours have young kids too,” he said.

“The prevailing winds are so strong in our area, so when you think about how asbestos dust can blow around—it’s pretty scary.

"It’s disappointing these sorts of things occur and investigations are needed but hopefully fines like these will stop other people from doing the same thing down the track.”

The Department conducts around 300 illegal dumping investigations annually across the State.

Illegal dumping can be reported to DWER’s 24-hour Pollution Watch Hotline on 1300 784 782 or by email to pollutionwatch@dwer.wa.gov.au.

Maximum penalties for illegal dumping are $62,500 for individuals and $125,000 for corporations.

Page reviewed 3 November 2020