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Environmental Crime

Our investigations

Each year we investigate a large number of reported offences with a view to taking action against the offenders.

We have a team of specialist officers who carry out investigations. They use a range of tools including:

  • high profile foot patrols of problem areas
  • surveillance of problem areas
  • collection of statements from members of the public or partner agencies

Environmental crime has a negative effect on our communities. It costs taxpayers a significant amount of money each year to clean up.

It is vital that you report any environmental crime for investigation. Following our investigation we may issue a fixed penalty notice.

In more serious cases we may prosecute through the Magistrate's Court.

If you witness anything which you feel is an offence, as long as it is safe to do so, please make note of any relevant information. This includes:

  • the day, date and time you saw the fly-tipping or crime
  • how many people were involved, what they looked like, what they were actually doing
  • any vehicles involved; the make, colour, and registration number
  • what kind of view you had, how far away you were, the weather and light conditions


People who carelessly discard litter in a public open place are committing a criminal offence. Littering offences apply to all places that are open to the air, including private open land, and land covered by water.


Fly-tipping is the illegal dumping of rubbish or bulky items. Fly-tipping can be dangerous. It can pollute land and waterways and it costs the council tax payer significant amounts of money to clear away. See fly-tipping date by parish

Abandoned vehicles

An abandoned vehicle is one that has been in the same place for a significant period of time. A vehicle that is in poor condition or out of tax does not necessarily mean that it is abandoned. This may also include caravans and trailers.

Dog fouling

If your dog fouls in any public area you are required to clean up and properly dispose of it. Failing to clean up after your dog has fouled will result in a fixed penalty being issued. This is for £100 or prosecution. If found guilty, you would face a maximum fine of £1,000.

Unauthorised Encampments

If you have concerns over people residing on land without permission you can report it.

Notice of seized vehicles

The Local Authority has the power to seize a vehicle under section 34 B of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, where there is reasonable belief that a relevant waste offence, such as fly-tipping, has been committed, or is being, or is about to be committed.

Under The Control of Waste (Dealing with Seized Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015, the Local Authority is required to publish a notice of the vehicle seizure on their website for a period of 15 working days.  Where we are currently holding a seized vehicle, there will be link below this paragraph with further details.  

Ford Transit PL10 FGN - seized 14/03/24 from Falmouth

Fixed Penalty Notice Statistics

We publish data on the fixed penalty notices served for environmental crimes. These crimes include:

  • Dog fouling
  • Fly-tipping
  • Abandoned vehicles

We have provided some information below which may be of help if you are considering submitting an FOI request:

Cancelled notices are notices that have been cancelled by the authority for evidential reasons.

Notices that are not complied with and are not cancelled are progressed to prosecution.

Fly Tipping data by Parish

You can access data of fly-tipping service requests dealt with over the last four financial years via the following link.

View the number of private land fly-tipping service requests by Parish

This is available for the last three financial years and quarter one to quarter four of 2023-2024.

View the number of public land fly-tipping service requests by Parish

This data is available for the financial years 2013/2014 to 2019/2020.

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