An Epping haulage boss has been sentenced to 120 hours of community service and ordered to pay £4,000 costs after he dumped 160 tonnes of waste illegally.

John Stride, director of Orion Support Services, pleaded guilty to causing his firm to deposit the waste, which was the equivalent in weight to a Boeing 787 aircraft, at a closed landfill site in Gerrards Cross, Buckinghamshire.

Howard McCann, prosecuting for the Environment Agency, said that vehicles belonging to Orion Support Services illegally dumped around eight lorry loads at Veolia UK’s Wapseys Wood landfill site over the bank holiday weekend of 26 to 29 May 2018.

The waste was part of a larger illegal dump of more than 600 tonnes at the closed site over that weekend.

After increasing their security, Veolia thwarted another attempt to dump more waste at the site from Stride’s vehicles and others the following weekend.

During what was described as a complex investigation, the Environment Agency crime team used information from Veolia, including CCTV footage and vehicle tracking data, to trace the waste dumped on site back to Stride’s company vehicles and his site in Canning Town.

Stride admitted in interview that he was responsible for the waste being dumped at the site. He also admitted that items found in the waste were likely to be from waste processed at his company’s site.

Stride, 56, was the sole director of Orion, which held an environmental permit to operate a waste site in Canning Town, east London.

The company, which held a licence authorising 35 HGVs, was dissolved in December 2019.

Barry Russell, an environment manager at the Environment Agency, said:

“Through our officers’ investigations, this prosecution sends out a strong signal to others that we will continue to fight tirelessly to combat illegal waste crime and bring those responsible to justice.

“We all create waste, and we all have a responsibility to ensure our waste is handled correctly.”