A notorious drive-by fly-tipper who hit the headlines when he dumped tonnes of rubbish on the borough’s streets has had his vehicles crushed for his crimes.
Croydon Council this week oversaw the destruction of two tipper trucks used by George Smith (watch the crushing here), to carry out some of the most appalling fly-tips Croydon has ever seen.
Magistrates ordered the confiscation of the vehicles ‘used to facilitate criminal behaviour’ earlier this year, when they jailed Smith for four fly-tipping offences carried out in Croydon in 2016. These included his most notorious crime, which made national news when he was captured on film tipping rubble, wood and other building waste along Croham Manor Close off Campden Road on 15 March 2016 (watch here).
Smith, of Cowley Crescent, Waddon, is the second person to be sent to prison for fly-tipping-related offences since the council launched its Don’t Mess With Croydon (DMWC) campaign in 2015. A third vehicle belonging to Smith was destroyed prior to the start of the case against him when he failed to claim it.
The case against him is one of 150 successful prosecutions carried out under DMWC, which combines enforcement for fly-tipping and littering, with encouraging the local community to take pride in their neighbourhood. Since the start of the campaign, Croydon Council has crushed 21 vehicles used to facilitate fly-tipping and criminal behaviour.
“George Smith used these trucks to dump rubbish and building waste illegally in our streets and public spaces, with total disregard for our community.
“Fly-tippers who use their vehicles to carry out waste crimes risk losing them. If the council suspect a vehicle has been used in a crime, officers can seize it to investigate. If the owner is prosecuted and found to have used their vehicle to facilitate criminal activity, they will forfeit it permanently and it can be destroyed.
“George Smith repeatedly flouted the law and I hope the crushing of his vehicles, along with his jail sentence, serves as a warning to him and to other waste criminals that we will simply not tolerate this behaviour and will not hesitate to exercise our powers to ensure they are brought to justice.”
Councillor Stuart Collins, deputy leader – Clean Green Croydon