Number of Flytipping convictions in Dundee between 2010 and 2018 according to The Procurator Fiscal

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Jonathan Rainey

Dear Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal (Scotland),

On 8th May 2019, I submitted a Freedom of Information Request to Dundee City Council requesting information about Flytipping using the following questions:

"1. How many fly tipping incidents in the county that your authority controls were reported
to Dundee City Council, Police Scotland (including then Tayside Police) and the
Scottish Environmental Protection Agency between 2010 and 2018?

2. How many fly tipping cases were dropped between 2010 and 2018 because the
evidence was found to be tampered with? Also, how many were dropped due to fears
of reprisals from the reported offender(s)? How many were also dropped due to lack
of evidence?

3. Can the citizens of the Dundee area set up their own covert surveillance cameras to
capture fly-tippers in the act themselves? If so, apart from Article 8 of the European
Convention on Human Rights (especially regarding section 2 on privacy being
exempt in the interest of preventing crime and disorder) what exact laws need to be
taken into consideration which includes regards to the Information Commissioner’s
Office? If high-quality footage of an offence was successfully captured, can the
footage be used in court?

4. What is the Litter Control Strategy that Dundee City Council has to abide by when
investigating fly tipping cases along with dog fouling and littering cases?"

On 10th May 2019, Dundee City Council's Legal Manager answered these questions with:

"1. We can only provide information for Dundee City Council. Due to a change in the
method of recording complaints figures can only be provided from 2015/16 onwards.

 2015/16 – 861
 2016/17 - 817
 2017/18 – 904

2. We cannot speculate on the reasons for cases being dropped, we can only provide
information for what we know.

 2010 – 10 lack of evidence
 2011 – 5 lack of evidence
 2012 – 1 lack of evidence
 2013 – 0
 2014 - 1 lack of evidence
 2015 - 3 lack of evidence
 2016 - 3 lack of evidence
 2017 - 3 lack of evidence
 2018 – 6 lack of evidence

3. We hold no views or information on this question.

4. We do not operate under a ‘Litter Control Strategy'."

So I requested an internal review of the Legal Manager's response with the following questions on 12th May 2019:

"1. In response to questions 1 and 2 in the previous FOI, how many of the reported fly tipping
offences resulted in a conviction?

2. In response to your answer to Question 3 of the previous FOI, since the Greenspace
Department of West Dunbartonshire Council were able to answer question 3 with no
problems in a similar FOI request on whatdotheyknow.com in late 2018. It was not answered
in the proper context of acknowledging section 2 of Article 8 of the European Convention on
Human Rights and sources of the code of conduct on surveillance from the Information
Commissioner’s Office. Since your authority is in charge of upholding the law to tackle dog
fouling, fly tipping and littering, can you confirm if the citizens of the Dundee City Council
area, if they are concerned about the Council not being able to install covert as well as overt
cameras to catch dog foulers, fly tippers and litter louts due to lack of resources from
austerity cuts made by the British Government, will be able to install covert cameras in both
private and public areas themselves to catch dog foulers, fly tippers and litter louts in the act?
Would the recorded footage be used in court against the offender(s)? What laws would the
public need to take into consideration when using the cameras?

3. If your authority does not have a Litter Control Strategy, what is the standard procedure
when dealing with dog foulers, fly tippers and litter louts from catching them in the act to
gathering evidence and taking them to court?”

The Legal Manager considered my request and answered it as follows:

"3 (*in reference to the question about successful flytipping convictions)

With regards to your first query, as this was not included in your original request, this is a
new request. However, in response to your new request, Dundee City Council does not hold
this information. The request should be made to the Procurator Fiscal’s office as they will be
able to provide you with this information.

As for your second query, CCTV within Dundee is run by Police Scotland. Furthermore, as
CCTV footage is used mainly in court proceedings it may be better talking to Police Scotland.
As regards what laws apply, this is not a request for information and as such cannot be
answered. Should you wish additional information it may be more helpful to contact Police
Scotland.

In respect of your third query, this is again a request for new information and as we have
previously advised, we do not have a Litter Control Strategy."

So therefore I put the question to you as a member of the Scottish public as a result of being passed to your authority by Dundee City Council: How many of the 2582 reported flytipping offences between 2015 and 2018 (although it is questionable that Dundee City Council would present the amount of offences between 2010 and 2018 subject to no further investigation due to insufficient evidence) resulted in successful convictions?

Yours faithfully,

Jonathan Rainey

DCC FOI and Internal Review Reference Number: 20190509001-1-1

FOI Enquiries, Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal (Scotland)

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1 Atodiad

Please find attached a response to your FOI request of 25 May 2019.

Thank you.

FOI Enquiries

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Twitter: @COPFS

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