Polluter Fined Under The Wild Life Protection Act

August 10, 2017

The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) and the Jamaica Constabulary Force after joint investigation arrested and charged Mr. Richard Wates for breaching section 11 of the Wild Life Protection Act (WLPA).

Mr. Richard Wates appeared before Trelawny Parish Judge, Stanley Clarke, in the Parish Court yesterday (Wednesday, August 9, 2017). He pleaded guilty to allowing a noxious or polluting matter to enter a water body containing fish. Judge Clarke sentenced Mr. Wates to 30 days imprisonment at hard labour or to pay a fine of $70,000.

The charge is in relation to an incident on June 29, 2017, when engine oil was discharged from a boat owned by Mr. Wates into the Glistening Waters Bay, Falmouth.

Ms. Morjorn Wallock, Director, Legal & Enforcement at NEPA indicated that, “the stewardship of the environment falls to the Agency not only in terms of the management of Jamaica’s natural resources but also its preservation. Enforcement and compliance is fundamental to this duty. The Agency will therefore avail itself of all legal options to secure compliance.”

NEPA is reminding the public that individuals found guilty of an offence under the WLPA may be charged a maximum fine of $100,000 or face up to one year imprisonment.

NEPA is urging members of the public to report suspected pollution incidents at (876) 754-7540 or 1-888-991-5005. Persons may also call 119 or make a report to the nearest police station.