Driver prosecuted for illegal scrap metal collection

Logo Published: Monday, 2nd September 2019

A man has been fined for operating as a scrap metal dealer without a licence, following enforcement action taken by Warrington Borough Council.

Mr Tiberius Tafui, aged 30, of Esmond Road, Manchester was found guilty of the offence, in his absence, at Warrington Combined Court, on 14 August 2019.  

He was fined £1,000 for the offence and ordered to pay a contribution to costs of £525 and a victim surcharge of £100.

The case came about when Mr Tafui, was stopped after being observed driving a vehicle carrying scrap metal. When questioned, he admitted that he was collecting scrap metal, but was unable to produce a dealer’s licence giving him the authority to do so. 

Anyone collecting scrap metal within Warrington must have a licence from the council. All licensed scrap metal dealers, (including both sites and collectors), undergo checks by the  council and Cheshire Constabulary, to ensure that only those who are deemed ‘fit and proper’ are issued with a licence to trade.

Residents are advised to check that anybody offering to collect scrap metal is displaying their licence clearly on their vehicle. Giving scrap metal to an unlicensed collector could result in unwanted items, such as fridges, being fly tipped and also takes trade away from licensed, legitimate businesses. 

Not using licensed scrap metal dealers could also result in enforcement action for failing to exercise the duty of care to dispose of waste responsibly.

Cllr Judith Guthrie, Warrington Borough Council’s cabinet member for environment and public protection, said: “This prosecution should serve as a warning - if you collect scrap metal in Warrington without a licence, you face a substantial fine. We will continue to protect our residents and our environment by taking enforcement action against unlawful traders. 

“By ignoring rules that are in place to protect the public and prevent crime, the actions of individuals like Mr Tafui also undermine legitimate scrap metal collectors operating within our borough. 

“Collecting scrap metal without a licence is unacceptable and, as I hope this case shows, the council will not tolerate this kind of blatant disregard for the law.”