‘Naive’ restaurant owner paid strangers to remove rubbish dumped nearby

Nurul Alam appeared at Suffolk Magistrates' Court Picture: GREGG BROWN

Nurul Alam appeared at Suffolk Magistrates' Court Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

A ‘naive’ restaurant owner will have to fork out almost 20 times the amount he paid two strangers to remove rubbish later found dumped at a roadside.

Nurul Alam had recently opened the Spice Garden, in Bury St Edmunds, when he took up an offer by two customers to remove a pile of waste for £60 in cash.

On May 31, a large quantity of waste appeared a few miles from the Risbygate Street restaurant - at the side of Rushbrooke Lane.

The rubbish included black refuse sacks, empty boxes, rubble, a mattress, an oil fryer, pieces of wood, food packages bearing the Risbygate Street address and laminated menus from the previous tenant.

Alam admitted disposing of controlled waste without taking reasonable measures to prevent contravening the Environmental Protection Act at Suffolk Magistrates' Court on Monday.

David Smithet, prosecuting for West Suffolk Council, said: "While Mr Alam wasn't the one who fly-tipped the rubbish, he allowed it to be collected by someone who didn't have a licence."

Mr Smithet said Alam had signed a commercial waste agreement with the council on May 20 for the twice weekly collection of four bins.

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He said Alam told enforcement officers that two men offered to transport the waste from a rear outdoor area to a recycling centre.

David Shipman, mitigating, said Alam had been undone by his "somewhat naive attitude" upon moving to the area from London with no experience in running a business.

"He realised there was quite a lot of rubbish to be cleared out, including non-commercial waste, which he moved into the garden pending collection," said Mr Shipman.

"He never thought to ask the council about non-commercial waste because he didn't think they would take it away.

"Two men said they would take it to a recycling centre.

"Unbeknownst to Mr Alam, it was dumped in Rushbrooke Lane and easily traceable back to the restaurant.

"He is very embarrassed.

"He's someone of previously good character, who takes his environmental responsibility very seriously, but rather stupidly accepted an offer that turned out not to be genuine."

Alam paid the council £225 to clear up the waste. He was also fined £359 by magistrates and ordered to pay £450 in costs.

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