Outraged man demands a refund after ‘small Amazon box’ leads to ‘silly’ £200 fly-tipping fine

Windsor resident Philip Kavvadias told the Local Democracy Reporting Service he was baffled when an officer from District Enforcement, which is a private environmental enforcement company, knocked on his door accusing him of fly-tipping.

The council entered a contract with the private firm last year to patrol the borough and issue fixed penalty notices to anyone they observe or have evidence of committing littering, dog fouling, and fly-tipping.

Prior to the officer’s visit, Mr Kavvadias said he took a small cardboard Amazon box to a recycling place by the Windsor Leisure Centre on Thursday, April 15.

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According to Mr Kavvadias, there were bigger boxes outside the centre’s skip and decided to put his package into one of them as it ‘didn’t cross his mind’ this would land him a fly-tipping fine.

The next day, a District Enforcement officer visited the Windsor resident’s home and allegedly accused him of fly-tipping all of the boxes found at the skip.

Mr Kavvadias told the officer he was not responsible for all of the boxes but did place his Amazon package into one of them.

The officer allegedly then told Mr Kavvadias that still counted as fly-tipping and slapped him with a £400 fine, which was reduced to £200 if he paid it within 14 days.

To avoid trouble, Mr Kavvadias did pay the £200 fine the next day but has since lodged a complaint with the council and company demanding a refund as he doesn’t think he should be slapped with a hefty fine over recyclable material.

State of the centres skip a few days after Mr Kavvadias visited it (Kavvadias)

State of the centre's skip a few days after Mr Kavvadias visited it (Kavvadias)

He said: “At the site, there were car seats and suitcases. It’s a problem and understand it’s a problem for the council.

“But it would make a lot of sense to catch the person who put the car seat or the suitcase rather than the cardboard box.

“I don’t think anyone should pay £200 for that. It’s a recyclable material. It’s not waste, it’s cardboard.”

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A council spokesman said: “We cannot comment on individual cases.

“We have a robust complaints procedure and any submitted to the council are carefully considered.

“There is also a formal appeals process for anyone issued with a fine.”