Illegal Fuel Laundering A Huge Cost To Public Purse

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ROBIN Newton East Belfast DUP MLA, a member of the Policing Board, has expressed concerns following confirmation from the Mark H Durkan MLA regarding the high cost of clean-ups from illegal fuel laundering plants.

Robin Newton said,

“The Minister of the Environment in responding to my question AQW 43413/11-15 has confirmed the costs as close to £1 million and involved 340 incidents of fly tipped fuel laundered waste within the period June 2012 – December 2014. This involved over 2657 tonnes of residue material (often acidic), and is dumped in multiple sites in relatively small quantities but spreading the potential toxic waste pollution across a wide geographical area.

Minister Durkan also confirms in reply to question AQW 4341/1111-15 he has not met the David Ford, Minister of Justice on the matter since December 2013.Given the seriousness of this matter and the high costs of clean-up and the costs to The Exchequer stronger and more frequent inter-departmental and inter-agency cooperation might be expected.

The Minister points out the responsibility for disruption and investigation of illegal fuel laundering is the responsibility of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs. However, many will feel there needs to be greater departmental emphasis placed on the matter given the negative implications this criminal activity has for the economy and the environment.”