Episode 6 Filthy Rotten Scoundrels


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Episode 6

Series investigating Britain's waste dumpers. The war against dog mess in Doncaster, and the police helicopter that filmed a fly-tipper in action without him suspecting a thing.


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Transcript


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Every day, a war is being waged across Britain to clean up our towns and countryside.

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I really hope these people are brought to court and go to prison over this.

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I could cry when I see this because it's such a mess.

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From the tons of cigarette butts, dogs' mess and household rubbish

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to mountains of tyres and skiploads of builders' waste...

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Glass bottles there,

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cans...

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The vast majority of this stuff dumped here could have been recycled.

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They've no respect for anybody. It's disgusting.

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We're on the front line of the clear-up and the fightback

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with a dedicated team tracking down the rogues and putting the "great" back into Britain.

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You may harm your defence if you fail to mention something which you later rely on in court.

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On today's programme, the eye in the sky

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that captured this incredible footage and left the brazen fly-tipper with nowhere to hide.

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He just lay back in his chair and he said, "You've got me bang to rights. What can I say?"

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And tracking down the households where dodgy plumbing means

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toilets are being flushed straight into our rivers and streams.

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You might find toilet waste and toilet paper.

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That's because the occasional builder may plumb in a toilet downstairs

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and put that into the wrong sewer system.

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Welcome to the dirty world of Filthy Rotten Scoundrels.

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First today, the malodorous matter of dog do. Yes, that pongy pet hate that haunts all of us.

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There's nothing worse than going out for a spot of fresh air, then feeling the dreaded squelch

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as your polished size 9s slip into a putrid pile.

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They should just have more respect for other people and for kids.

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No-one wants to kind of like walk around a park that's covered in dog do.

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It's not doing us justice. We've got kids playing around in the alleys.

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They're coming back with bits on their feet and people are not bothering picking it up.

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And you know, it's like a hygiene problem.

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It stinks, actually.

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If I had a £5 note for every time I stood in dog excrement,

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either getting out of the car or walking about in the street, I'd pay to go on holiday tomorrow.

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In Doncaster, the awful trail of dodgy dog mess has led us

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to the door of local enforcement warden Rob.

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Part of Rob's job is to patrol the green spaces of Doncaster which are packed with dog walkers.

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Unfortunately, some of these areas are heavily littered with dog muck.

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We also make sure that when we're out there,

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we check the areas for dog muck

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and if there's a considerable amount,

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then we would get our cleanse teams to come out and remove it.

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Cleanse teams? That all sounds a bit la-di-da for dealing with what we all know is basically dog poo.

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Dog fouling is a real problem for this area.

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It's not a massive problem throughout Doncaster, but in this particular area here,

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we find there's a lot of dog muck.

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Oh, God, look at the state of that!

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I'm trying not to, to be honest, Rob.

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Anyone got a peg for my nose?

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That's disgraceful. I mean, you've got...

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20-odd dumps of dog muck here.

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Obviously, somebody's coming here on a regular basis

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and using this particular area here to dump their dog muck.

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So it's disgraceful.

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You wouldn't let your children or yourself litter the street, so why let your dog do it?

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-I think dog poo's worse than litter.

-Yeah.

-Yeah.

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You can just pick up litter and put it in the bin, but dog poo, it's like...

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And it's not your own dog, is it?

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You see, we've got these dog poo bins in.

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There's no reason why this dog fouling should happen on here whatsoever

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because we've got a litter bin and a dog waste bin.

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And what we've had to do is we've had to put signs on the pavement

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to tell people to clear up.

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It's ironic that we put these sort of things in for people to use,

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as in bins, dog waste bins, and they don't use them.

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Rob has the authority to issue a fine of £50

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to anyone who fails to clean up after their dog does its business,

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and if they fail to pay, they could land up in the magistrates court and face a much heftier penalty.

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This area also gets quite heavily littered because we've got a lot of street drinkers,

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people drinking beer and leaving cans and bottles hanging about.

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You can see there's some dog muck on the floor here.

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What happens is we would put in what we call an EPA in for this area,

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which basically stands for Environmental Protection Act. We would go round and get this cleared.

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The bins will be emptied, so I'll do that now and put that through to our team.

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Good idea, Rob. The sooner this place gets cleaned up, the sooner I can take this peg off my nose.

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Can you put me an EPA in, please?

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For Spencer Avenue, Wheatley.

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It'll be the full, the full, um...area.

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People who don't pick up after their dogs are actually spoiling their own communities.

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And they're basically selfish

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because if they don't pick up after their dog, somebody else will have to clear it up, i.e, the council.

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People are going to step in it.

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Children can get it on their hands and they can digest it and get all sorts of problems there.

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It's really scary stuff.

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If the fouling dogs haven't been wormed, the biggest worry is toxocariasis

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where parasites from a dog's mess are ingested by humans.

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The eggs hatch and attack our organs.

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It can actually cause blindness and around 12 children a year are affected in the UK.

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-'Ey up, Derek, are you all right?

-Aye, not so bad, mate.

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-We weren't sure if we were going to this park or Baxter Park.

-This one.

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Excellent. Rob's cavalry has arrived and wait till you hear this.

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There's a lot more dog muck around the play equipment.

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Dog's muck around a kids' playground? As well as disgusting, it's downright dangerous!

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We've got a children's play area here which has also, every now and again, got dog muck on it.

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It's disgraceful because this is the sort of area that people can't use or children won't want to use it,

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so it becomes very difficult for people to use it as a recreational area which it was built for

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when people leave dog mess all across it.

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We've cleaned it up and it's back to how it should be.

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It makes me feel sick. They shouldn't let dogs do it in the first place.

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They should clean their own mess up.

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It's part of the job. You do get used to it after a while, but it is really annoying and very costly.

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These lads could be... Instead of having to do this on a regular basis through irresponsible dog owners,

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they should be off in other areas, tidying other areas up.

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Two bags full. Two of them, nearly full.

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Last time I did it.

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-Of all sorts.

-A lot of it were runny.

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-More than runny.

-Yeah.

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-Thanks very much for that, fellas. I appreciate that.

-We'll get off then. There you are, Derek.

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-Cheers, boys.

-There we go.

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The vast majority of people in this area are good people

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who want to see this area used for its purpose, which is recreation.

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They don't want to see dog muck all over the place.

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They don't want to stand in it and it's up to us to ensure that people can use this as a recreation area.

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That's why we brought the lads down here today to remove it.

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It's also about educating people in the area about what is right and wrong.

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We're back on puppy patrol later when we'll meet Doncaster's best behaved dog owner.

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I would clean up after my dog. And there are plenty bins now out there that you can use.

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If everybody did it, the parks would be kept cleaner and tidier for everybody to use.

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Down an old, crooked lane in the heart of the Black Country, there was an old, crooked house...

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..with a very crooked problem.

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-You feel drunk before you walk in the door.

-I'm not surprised.

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It wasn't the slant in the floor that was causing Wayne Penn, the landlord of the pub, a headache.

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-You're in the hands of these selfish people.

-That sort of thing is disgusting, quite frankly.

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Wayne took over the pub three years ago and he thought, "What better place to pull the perfect pint -

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"an unusual, historic pub in a beautiful, idyllic spot!"

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I'm quite proud to be the landlord of The Crooked House,

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a pub that's been here for 200, 300 years, a lovely, unique building in the middle of lovely countryside,

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serving travellers and guests from around the country and the world.

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But the travellers from around the world started to notice a problem on the way to enjoy a pint.

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The lane was littered with rubbish.

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David Patterson from South Staffordshire Council takes up the story.

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In 2009, we started receiving quite a few complaints about fly-tipping along Coppice Mill Lane.

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As you see here, a large amount of domestic and commercial waste has just been dumped along the road.

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Because it's a remote lane, people were driving up here, throwing their waste down and driving off,

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which was having a really bad impact both on the environment and the business of the pub.

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The country lane was being turned into the local dump.

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It's enough to put you off your pint and the rubbish meant punters were staying away.

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We've been coming to The Crooked House for about nigh-on 50 years

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and then to see all the rubbish and washing machines and chemicals and things dumped,

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-it's just heart-breaking for us, isn't it?

-Mm-hm.

-We met here, didn't we?

-Yes.

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Ah, how sweet! Yet some filthy, rotten fly-tippers were ruining their romantic rendezvous.

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Within just six months, four huge loads of waste had been dumped on the lane.

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Some days, there'd be piles that would fill probably all of that area right back up to the fence,

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probably about four feet high, including household waste, DIY rubble.

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And as we get guests coming in from all over the world,

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the first thing they get to see is a huge amount of fly-tipping.

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It wasn't just an eyesore for tourists. The mountains of rubbish meant getting to work

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was turning into an obstacle course of junk for Wayne.

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You'd come to the point where it was a dread to come down the lane and see what was going to be facing us,

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to the point where I've come down the lane on one occasion and not been able to physically get down the lane.

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Unbelievable! The fly-tippers had dumped so much rubbish that it even caused a local stream to flood.

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Wayne was working all hours to try and keep his business going,

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but thanks to selfish fly-tippers, he couldn't even open up.

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It's just gut-wrenching sometimes to think you work all day every day,

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then on a Sunday where it's almost your bread and butter, you are closed,

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losing thousands of pounds that still needs to be paid out.

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The lane was totally blocked. The pub had to close its crooked door and the clear-up began.

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It took two days to clear and filled four truckloads. The £4,000 tab was picked up by the taxpayer.

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It wasn't just the public that felt it in the pocket.

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It's not just the expense of what we've lost. On a Sunday, there's the expense of what you've already got.

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You've started cooking stuff, you've bought all your produce. You've got to tell customers you'll not be open.

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And it's all out of your hands.

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It is gut-wrenching at times, it's disappointing

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and it's demoralising.

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Wayne couldn't go on like this. His business faced disaster, but he was not about to call time on his pub,

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so he called his local MP instead.

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We got in touch with the council and we all met here at The Crooked House

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to discuss what we would do to stop these issues, to try and catch the people responsible for this.

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And this was the turning point. Wayne and the council hatched a plan.

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They got permission to plant secret cameras on the lane to try and catch the criminals in the act.

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In situations where we're doing a covert camera, we need special permission. It's only for a month.

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It lasted for a month and we got no hits from the camera.

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Gutted! Their hopes were dashed. The fly-tippers stayed away and the sting looked like it had failed.

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But the countryside crack squad weren't giving up that easily.

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The council got an extension for another month. Game back on!

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So you caught someone. Right, Wayne?

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-It went on for about three or four weeks with nothing at all.

-Oh!

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The officers went down to check the camera, change the battery and get ready to remove the camera.

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Game over then.

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But hold your horses! What have we here?

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-Bingo! Gotcha!

-To the council's amazement, they had bagged an Oscar-winning piece of film.

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Lo and behold, we get the result of Mr Price dropping his waste into the undergrowth,

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which is great.

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As you'll see in a moment, he's up to no good because he stops,

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sees a car going by, waits...

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..and hitches up his trousers because they're falling down, then gets back into the van.

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As you'll see, he's throwing a large amount of waste into the undergrowth here.

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When we interviewed him later, he said he was just placing it on the side. That's not true.

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He was throwing it into the undergrowth, hoping someone else would clear it up.

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It wasn't on his patch. He didn't care.

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It's remarkable, the amount of stuff coming out. His van looks like the Tardis!

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You're right. It is a bit of a Tardis.

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Is he still going?

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He'll pull a Dalek out in a minute!

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But however much he's got in there, one thing's clear. The camera was catching it all.

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No amount of time travel is going to save you from the law now, mate.

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The council had got their man and they hauled him in for questioning.

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At the interview under caution, he initially played dumb with us

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and tried to pull the wool over our eyes

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by saying that he was only putting it on the side.

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If that's putting it on the side, I'm a Dutchman because he's just thrown it.

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He said he would collect it later.

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Collect it later? Pull the other one!

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After we showed him the film, he accepted that he had put the waste down there.

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That's what's known as a fair cop, mate, and as for Wayne, it's what's known as drinks all round.

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After years of cleaning up the mess and seeing lots of amounts of fly-tipping,

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it was a bit of a relief and a bit of a weight lifted off our shoulders

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when South Staffordshire Council phoned us up to say the cameras had actually worked.

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They had caught an individual and were going to prosecute.

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It was quite heart-warming to find that someone was going to get caught for it

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and face up to the consequences of what they had actually done.

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Fred Price was ordered to serve 250 hours' community service,

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pay costs of £539 and given a four-month suspended prison sentence for one count of fly-tipping.

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The message I want to give out to people like Mr Price is, "A", we will come after you,

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"B", when we catch you, you will get badly fined, so watch out.

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In all honesty, he got what was coming to him.

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Today, the crooked lane has a gate to try and deter fly-tippers

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and the word's out that the crooked lane crack squad will be after you if you try anything,

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even if you have got a Tardis.

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From crooked houses to crooked plumbing, causing a filthy, rotten problem.

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This is the edge of Epping Forest, a beautiful green space where London stretches into Essex.

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Much of the water in these streams will have come from the roof gutters of houses and street drains nearby

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through channels like these. It looks like fresh water that's safe for animals and wildlife.

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But Thames Water has discovered that some fresh water streams

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have been dangerously polluted and here's a scary thought.

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It could be a householder like you who's the pesky polluter,

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even though you're unaware of it.

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What's more, polluters are liable for prosecution and ignorance is no defence,

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so listen up very carefully to this man.

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Chris Carthy from Thames Water is on a mission to get the Great British public to understand

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that there's not one, but two sewer systems.

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For our sewer networks, we've got a separate foul and surface water sewer system.

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The surface water sewer system should just be taking run-off from the roads and also from the roofs.

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The water runs into streams and rivers

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while the foul water sewer system carries waste from toilets and sinks

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into sewage plants for treatment and never should the two meet or mix,

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but sadly, that's not the case

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because some plumbers don't seem to know their soil stacks from their downpipes.

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Look at this - toilet and bathroom basin plumbed into the rainwater downpipe.

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Unbelievable, I know, but that's the root of this dangerous problem.

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Unfortunately, across London we've got a real issue of misconnections of domestic appliances.

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Kitchen sinks, washing machines, dishwashers are fairly often plumbed into the surface water drain,

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hence these pollution issues which we see in the river as well.

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And it's a massive problem.

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Around 2% of properties in the Thames Water area have the wrong plumbing connections

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and that figure is repeated across the UK.

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Misconnections like these result in the equivalent of 16 Olympic-sized swimming pools of foul water

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ending up in rivers and streams across the country every single day.

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Eugh! It makes you feel quite queasy, doesn't it?

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That's why Thames Water needs specialist contractors like Andy Huntley and Anthony Ridge

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who steel themselves to sniff out the festering, foul mix-up.

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The process is pretty low-tech.

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A screen cage - this small roll of what looks like wire fencing

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is used to collect evidence of contamination in the surface water sewer pipes.

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We insert this into the sewer and it catches anything that goes through there

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and the fungus grows on the bottom, so we can tell how much is in there.

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This screen cage was put in three days ago, so it's ready for Andy and Anthony to assess.

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-There's a bit of pollution on there.

-It looks mainly like leaf breakdown. It's very light.

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It's a bit white in there and it smells a bit funky.

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So there is evidence of a bad connection here and the really clever thing about this process

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is the guys can pinpoint with amazing precision where the foul water is coming from.

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If it's you, they'll find you.

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We cage the surface water system at strategic points to narrow it down to individual roads,

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then we do property surveys to try and understand which properties are contributing to the problem.

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It's a lot of work we're doing with specialist pollution-tracing contractors to find these issues.

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Andy and Anthony update Chris on what they've found

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and crucially, how many houses they think have got problems.

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Yeah, you can see, here's the outfall here.

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And we've put our screen cages in at various places. You can see that this section's clean.

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It's looking OK. And these areas we've marked with the pink are showing where the pollution is.

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So have we surveyed the properties on this section that the cage found was polluted as well?

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Yeah, we've already started surveying there and found three misconnections so far.

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So they're being dealt with now and will be taken off and then it should look a lot cleaner.

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-We'll gradually work our way through the others.

-That sounds good.

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For Andy, it's a passion project. He's had plenty of experience of disgusting misconnected toilets

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where the foul water flowed into streams. It's not just fungus and scum that you can see.

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Sometimes we even come down to the outfall and it's really polluted.

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You might find toilet waste and toilet paper

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and that's due to the occasional builder plumbing in a toilet downstairs in the wrong sewer system

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and that ends up in the water course. If it's close to where it discharges, it can make it terrible.

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So you can understand why finding the household pumping it out is pretty important work.

0:22:330:22:40

Andy's come to one property where he thinks there could be a problem.

0:22:400:22:44

'We're here because I put a screen cage at the bottom of the road and found toilet waste in there.'

0:22:440:22:50

It was a process of elimination. We did each house individually until we found it.

0:22:500:22:55

Then it's time for the science bit. Well, it looks more like magic.

0:22:560:23:02

That red powder makes the water go green, but it does the trick.

0:23:020:23:06

I've put some green dye into the toilet, then flushed it.

0:23:100:23:14

Now it's going into the sewer system and we should see it in the road.

0:23:140:23:19

If it turns up in the foul water system, this property will be fine.

0:23:200:23:25

If it turns up in the surface water system, we have a cross connection and it's in the local water course.

0:23:250:23:31

Amazing detective work. Who knew there were people out there even investigating this kind of thing?

0:23:310:23:39

Next, Andy's got to follow the green dye to find out whether the plumber made the right connections

0:23:390:23:45

so the foul water ends up in a treatment plant, not the stream.

0:23:450:23:50

And now all will be revealed. Have we got misconnected pipes?

0:23:500:23:55

Go that way.

0:23:550:23:57

-Let's see.

-Green dye.

0:23:580:24:01

So this is a misconnected drain. The toilet's misconnected.

0:24:010:24:05

We'll talk to the person that owns the property

0:24:050:24:09

to get the rectification done.

0:24:090:24:12

We'll check it afterwards that it's not in the surface water system.

0:24:120:24:16

Another offending household down means the guys are getting closer to a total clean up of local streams.

0:24:180:24:25

They've made great progress in cleaning up these outfalls and streams at Epping Forest.

0:24:250:24:31

They used to be badly polluted,

0:24:310:24:34

but, as you can see, the guys' diligent work is paying off.

0:24:370:24:41

And there's another way to tackle the problem at source -

0:24:440:24:48

avoid using the wrong kind of plumber.

0:24:480:24:51

To stop toilet waste and dishwasher waste getting into rivers

0:24:510:24:56

people should talk to their contractor and make sure they know the different sewer systems.

0:24:560:25:03

A good contractor should know and be able to tell the difference and plumb it correctly.

0:25:030:25:08

In other words, steer clear of cowboy plumbers and do your bit to keep our streams fresh and clear.

0:25:080:25:16

Hear that, dog owners? Fresh and clear. That's what we want.

0:25:160:25:21

Back now with enforcement wardens Rob and Elaine inspecting the parks of Doncaster on their poo patrol.

0:25:210:25:29

It's a nasty job, but someone's got to do it.

0:25:290:25:33

What sort of time are they coming?

0:25:330:25:35

The team have an ingenious way to reward good citizens for cleaning up their dog do.

0:25:350:25:41

Anyone they see who has done the right thing gets their name put in a monthly prize draw.

0:25:410:25:47

The scheme that we've set up encourages people to clear up after their dogs

0:25:470:25:53

and it's not just fining people all the time. If there's an incentive for them to do it

0:25:530:25:59

and get a free hamper of food, then it's a nice way of saying thank you to the people who do do it.

0:25:590:26:06

Those people who we spoke to today will be put into a draw at the end of the month

0:26:060:26:12

and whoever wins wins some dog food, a hamper,

0:26:120:26:16

some toys and a big thank you from everybody.

0:26:160:26:20

Now dogs might like fetching sticks, but people seem to prefer a carrot to a stick,

0:26:220:26:28

so surely if more dog owners find out about the rewards, they'll start to pick up the poo.

0:26:280:26:35

We were miles away and saw this lady's dog poo. We've run up to her

0:26:350:26:40

and she's actually picked up, so we're planning to take her details and thank her

0:26:400:26:46

and put her in t'draw. Simple as that. Rob's getting the details.

0:26:460:26:50

They just approached us to say thank you for picking up the dirt, which anybody should do really.

0:26:540:27:01

Children play on here and it's obviously bad for them

0:27:010:27:06

to be walking in dog dirt. And they use it as a sports ground as well.

0:27:060:27:11

So we're just grateful that we can walk the dogs here and it's just a small thing

0:27:110:27:17

to clear up the mess. People should be aware of

0:27:170:27:21

what they do with their dogs when they're out and about.

0:27:210:27:26

Well, a happy customer there and Elaine and Rob seem to be getting their dog mess message across.

0:27:260:27:34

We've come across three people who we have put into the draw for our Responsible Dog Owners scheme.

0:27:340:27:41

Our presence seems to be working. It's a lot cleaner than it used to be, so we'll be back next week

0:27:410:27:46

to see if we can carry on with it.

0:27:460:27:49

Excellent news, Elaine. Now you've really found your footing, but be careful where you...tread.

0:27:490:27:56

As you can see, I've just trod in some dog muck.

0:27:560:28:00

It's not this lady's. This is what we're trying to stop.

0:28:000:28:05

Disgraceful. Absolutely disgraceful.

0:28:050:28:08

With a cleaned up shoe, Elaine and Rob set off to present this month's winner with their reward.

0:28:110:28:19

Mrs McMahon? It's Robert from Doncaster Council.

0:28:240:28:27

-We're here because you're the winner of our Responsible Dog Owner competition this month.

-Lovely.

0:28:270:28:34

Good girl.

0:28:340:28:35

What do you say?

0:28:360:28:38

I don't like it when I go walking. It's not very nice.

0:28:380:28:43

That's why I always clean up after my dog.

0:28:430:28:47

Respect for other people using the park.

0:28:470:28:50

You can see when your dog is fouling. They just seem to turn a blind eye and just walk away.

0:28:500:28:57

There's plenty of bins out there that you can use. There's a couple in the park that you can use.

0:28:570:29:04

If everybody did it, the parks would be kept cleaner and tidier for everybody.

0:29:040:29:09

Well done, guys. It's a happy ending for this canine caper

0:29:090:29:14

and the dog walkers of Doncaster can all tread a little less carefully tonight.

0:29:140:29:19

South Yorkshire Police Air Support Unit's high-octane work sees them tracking criminals

0:29:260:29:33

across Rotherham, Barnsley, Sheffield and Doncaster.

0:29:330:29:37

They make the most of every second of flying time, even on their way back from jobs.

0:29:370:29:43

The main job is police work,

0:29:430:29:45

but when we've concluded all that,

0:29:450:29:49

we try to help the council as well, so if they have fly tipping hotspots

0:29:490:29:53

and we're flying over that location on the way back from a task, we'll try to patrol the sites

0:29:530:30:00

and if anybody is fly tipping, we'll film them and gain evidence.

0:30:000:30:04

Their secret weapon is the state of the art camera on the helicopter.

0:30:040:30:08

As we can see, it spins 360 degrees so it will move all the way around.

0:30:080:30:14

It's got three lenses fitted to it, it's got a daylight camera and a low-light camera

0:30:140:30:20

and a thermal imaging camera, which gives us the ability to see in the dark,

0:30:200:30:25

But its killer feature is its long range. Anyone up to no good can be completely oblivious

0:30:250:30:31

that they're being caught in the act. And that's exactly what the Air Support Unit did

0:30:310:30:38

on their return from a busy day's aerial policing over Doncaster.

0:30:380:30:42

We'd initially deployed to go to a stolen vehicle.

0:30:420:30:46

It was a stolen Land Rover. They'd done the search for the vehicle and on the way back they decided

0:30:460:30:52

to fly back over a fly tipping hotspot.

0:30:520:30:56

Just as they got over the site, they saw what looked to be a flat-bed Transit vehicle

0:30:560:31:02

and there was somebody in the back unloading garden rubbish, tarpaulins.

0:31:020:31:08

Once the helicopter crew spotted something afoot,

0:31:080:31:11

they flew away to a distance of two miles to film the action unnoticed.

0:31:110:31:16

What the camera saw was green waste from a landscaping company's van

0:31:160:31:20

being unloaded in wheelbarrow loads onto an already huge fly tip.

0:31:200:31:25

They even stopped for a cup of tea and a biscuit. It was gold,

0:31:250:31:29

and these filthy rotten scoundrels had no idea they'd been framed.

0:31:290:31:34

They stood off, used the camera, the observer in the front filmed everything that he could see.

0:31:340:31:40

They then came back, copied all the evidence onto DVD and contacted the council, who took it further.

0:31:400:31:47

Mark Benton, Environmental Investigator at Doncaster Council, gratefully received the footage.

0:31:470:31:54

I was contacted by a police officer from the S4 unit and they said they'd got some footage.

0:31:540:32:00

We don't get footage like this very often,

0:32:000:32:03

so it's absolutely great to get image quality like this

0:32:030:32:07

where you can clearly see sign written vehicles, you can see the registration and the people.

0:32:070:32:14

Even though it was filmed from a distance, it was crystal clear.

0:32:140:32:19

What you've got is a young lad here and he's unloading polythene

0:32:200:32:25

and green waste out of a flat-back Transit van into a wheelbarrow.

0:32:250:32:30

He's using a fork to actually put all the waste in

0:32:300:32:35

and you can see the extent of the fly tipping around this area.

0:32:350:32:40

Would you believe it?

0:32:400:32:43

Instead of doing the right thing and going to an official waste site,

0:32:430:32:47

this pair of rascals have got wind of an existing fly tip and are merrily making it even bigger.

0:32:470:32:53

Apart from being an eyesore, this sort of fly tip is a dangerous hazard.

0:32:530:32:59

As you can see,

0:32:590:33:01

this is all combustible material. It wouldn't take nothing at all to set all this on fire

0:33:010:33:07

and either put people's life in danger or cause a significant impact on the local residents

0:33:070:33:13

from the smoke. This person - it seems to be a businessman -

0:33:130:33:18

what he's actually doing is getting people to pay him the correct price for the job,

0:33:180:33:24

and instead of legitimately getting rid of his waste, he's fly tipping it

0:33:240:33:30

and keeping the money in his own back pocket.

0:33:300:33:33

And the council have to pay out twice - one for the investigation costs for this fly tipping

0:33:330:33:39

and, two, as it's council land, we'll have to remove the waste,

0:33:390:33:44

which will cost thousands.

0:33:440:33:47

But the good news is, using this top-notch footage, Mark had all the evidence he needed to investigate.

0:33:470:33:54

Working in partnership with DVLA, I was able to get the name and address of the registered keeper.

0:33:540:34:00

I invited him in to see me and we did a taped interview,

0:34:000:34:05

under caution, like the police do.

0:34:050:34:08

And it was quite interesting.

0:34:080:34:12

Mark knew he had a strong case, but the van owner was completely in the dark about the evidence he had.

0:34:120:34:20

The chap that I interviewed said that he'd been on holiday,

0:34:210:34:26

he'd left the keys in the vehicle.

0:34:260:34:29

He didn't really know who'd had access to it. It could have been anybody that had used the vehicle

0:34:290:34:35

if it had been seen fly tipping. And he said loads of people borrow his vehicle,

0:34:350:34:43

but business had been very slack so he'd not moved any waste recently.

0:34:430:34:48

Is he a generous guy who wanted anyone without a van to have the use of his?

0:34:480:34:54

Or is he being a bit economical with the truth? Mark let him dig a big hole, then pressed "Play".

0:34:540:35:01

What I thought would be best to do was for him to view the footage and then ask for his comments.

0:35:010:35:07

Er, and it was quite clearly the same person that I was speaking to.

0:35:070:35:13

He just laid back in his chair and he says, "Well, you've got me bang to rights. What can I say?"

0:35:130:35:20

Well, how about "sorry" for a start for trying to blag your way out of this dirty, rotten crime?

0:35:200:35:27

Doncaster Council solicitors took the accused to court where he pleaded guilty to fly tipping.

0:35:270:35:33

Unfortunately, he only got fined £150 for the fly tipping and the other waste offences.

0:35:330:35:40

And the court decided to give the Council £100 as a contribution

0:35:400:35:47

towards the costs of not only investigating, but for removing the waste.

0:35:470:35:53

In some ways it's quite disappointing. However, he did plead guilty to the offence

0:35:530:36:00

and he did say he was of limited means, to be fair. And it was the first time he'd done it.

0:36:000:36:06

At the end of the day, this is a really persuasive argument for how two different teams

0:36:060:36:13

can really help fight for a rubbish-free Britain.

0:36:130:36:17

There's no way the Council could afford a helicopter to watch this.

0:36:170:36:21

And I think it sends a very clear message to fly tippers

0:36:210:36:26

that people are interested in keeping Doncaster looking nice

0:36:260:36:30

and the people who spoil it will be brought to justice.

0:36:300:36:35

A bird's eye view of foul behaviour from street level now. Meet John McSwan.

0:36:400:36:46

John's an Enforcement Manager at Brent Council. He makes sure

0:36:460:36:50

businesses stick to the rules of rubbish and keep our streets tidy.

0:36:500:36:55

Unfortunately, we have businesses

0:36:550:36:57

that will take any means of steps, any range of steps,

0:36:570:37:02

to avoid incurring costs for waste disposal.

0:37:020:37:06

The only way they get rid of waste is by illegal means.

0:37:060:37:10

John's had a little problem with a chicken shop in Kilburn that keeps laying some very rotten eggs.

0:37:100:37:17

The first instance took place on 7th October.

0:37:170:37:21

This was about 12.30am.

0:37:210:37:24

A member of staff emerged. He's dressed in a typical Chicken Express outfit, red top, red hat.

0:37:240:37:31

And throws the bags on the street.

0:37:310:37:33

He then returned to the shop.

0:37:340:37:37

The brazen cheek of it! Strutting up, preening his feathers and leaving a nasty surprise.

0:37:370:37:44

All businesses have to dispose of their waste correctly. Dumping it on the street is not clever,

0:37:440:37:50

nor correct. Tell them how it should be done, John.

0:37:500:37:55

Go into a contract with a licensed waste carrier

0:37:550:37:59

who will collect their waste and dispose of it.

0:37:590:38:02

Right. Option one - pay someone to take it away for you.

0:38:020:38:07

Alternatively, they can take it to a licensed civic amenities site

0:38:070:38:11

where they declare it as business waste, pay for its disposal

0:38:110:38:16

and get what they call a Waste Transfer Note as a receipt.

0:38:160:38:20

And option two - take it to the dump yourself. Simple.

0:38:200:38:24

If you don't dispose of your waste correctly, you'll ruffle John's feathers. But not just his.

0:38:240:38:30

They seem to think it's their right and the Council will clear it.

0:38:300:38:35

Well, I don't like it. We came up the road here and it was pretty gross.

0:38:350:38:41

Restaurants that don't dispose of waste properly need to be fined heavily.

0:38:410:38:47

And fined heavily is just what can happen.

0:38:470:38:51

They can be fined up to a maximum of £50,000 or six months in prison.

0:38:510:38:56

At the Crown Court, if they go there and they're found guilty,

0:38:560:39:00

there's unlimited fines and they can get up to five years in prison.

0:39:000:39:06

So that sort of indicates the seriousness of the offence.

0:39:060:39:10

Back at the chicken shop, that message just wasn't getting through.

0:39:100:39:15

Dumping their rubbish on the street wasn't a one-off. Night after night they'd lay another little egg.

0:39:150:39:20

It may seem like no big deal, but for local residents it's a major problem.

0:39:200:39:26

To just dispose of raw meat or leftovers from their restaurants or whatever is unacceptable.

0:39:260:39:34

It causes all manner of vermin. There's the smell of it.

0:39:340:39:39

On a hot day like this, can you imagine? It's absolutely unacceptable.

0:39:390:39:45

By now the chicken shop had caused a stink. They'd laid a dozen rotten eggs without a care in the world.

0:39:470:39:55

It was time for John McSwan to swoop. Get it? McSwan...swan. Swoop?

0:39:550:40:00

During the course of the investigation, we identified the owner as Mr Liaqat Ali.

0:40:000:40:08

He was shown the CCTV recordings as part of the interview process.

0:40:080:40:13

He fully admitted it was his premises, it was his staff that were dumping on a regular basis.

0:40:130:40:19

And he gave an explanation on the basis that he thought he had some arrangement for disposal in place.

0:40:190:40:26

That wasn't the case at all.

0:40:260:40:28

We traced no evidence to suggest this gentleman ever had an effective system to manage his waste.

0:40:280:40:35

The big bird at the chicken shop got a right roasting from the Council.

0:40:350:40:40

He accepted responsibility and ended up in court.

0:40:400:40:44

He pleaded guilty to all 12 offences

0:40:440:40:47

and he was fined, ordered to pay compensation and costs to a total of £4,800.

0:40:470:40:54

Job done, right? Wrong. The fine was just chickenfeed to Mr Ali.

0:40:540:40:59

The first series of offences were referred to our legal team for prosecution,

0:40:590:41:04

but while that was being implemented, remarkably and unbelievably, we picked up on Mr Ali

0:41:040:41:10

and his staff actually committing a further series of offences.

0:41:100:41:15

Unbelievable. By now the staff at the chicken shop had laid a dirty dozen and they didn't stop.

0:41:150:41:22

It looks like they didn't give a stuffing what the council or community thought.

0:41:220:41:27

When it comes to restaurants disposing their stuff the wrong way, that's unacceptable.

0:41:270:41:33

I have seen it and it's a nuisance. And distasteful.

0:41:330:41:38

He should be heavily fined so that he does toe the line

0:41:380:41:43

and accepts his responsibility as a trader in the neighbourhood.

0:41:430:41:47

It was time to give the owner another grilling.

0:41:470:41:51

Mr Ali was taken to court again. He squawked a guilty plea a second time and was given another fine.

0:41:510:41:58

He appeared in court again on 26th July and pleaded guilty to the second series of offences.

0:41:580:42:05

And he was fined and ordered to pay costs totalling £2,600.

0:42:050:42:11

In total, Mr Ali for those two series of offences

0:42:110:42:15

has been fined and paid costs in excess of £7,500.

0:42:150:42:20

Now they say that chickens are dumb birds. The ones at Chicken Express in Kilburn certainly are.

0:42:200:42:26

Mr Ali ended up paying out a total of £7,500,

0:42:260:42:31

but it didn't have to be as hard as laying a golden egg. John?

0:42:310:42:36

In reality, if he had taken the advice of the Council

0:42:360:42:41

and acted on the information we'd given him, he could easily have had a contract in place

0:42:410:42:48

that would have cost in the region of £500 a year.

0:42:480:42:52

I guess that leaves Mr Ali with egg on his face.

0:42:520:42:56

This mucky mess clutters our streets and wrecks our countryside,

0:42:580:43:02

but our environment enforcers are working day and night to make Britain cleaner.

0:43:020:43:08

Join us next time when we'll be chasing down more filthy, rotten scoundrels.

0:43:080:43:14

Subtitles by Subtext for Red Bee Media Ltd - 2011

0:43:260:43:30

Email [email protected]

0:43:310:43:33

The war against dog mess in Doncaster, and the police helicopter that filmed a fly-tipper in action without him suspecting a thing. Plus, how our household appliances could be pumping dirty water straight in to our rivers thanks to dodgy plumbing we know nothing about.