A farm was used as an illegal waste disposal site, a court was told.

Environmental officials watched as lorries, some with trailers, took waste to the council owned Morriston Farm at Green Lane in Sealand.

Flintshire magistrates’ court at Mold was told how controlled waste including wood, roof tiles, green vegetation and household waste was deposited on the land.

But there was no environmental permit, explained Dafydd Roberts, prosecuting for Natural Resources Wales.

Tenant farmer David Thomas McCarrick, 50, of Morriston Farm, ended up with a court bill of £1,617 and was warned that he could have gone to prison.

He admitted that in November of last year he permitted controlled waste to be deposited on land at the farm without an environment permit and operating a regulated facility – depositing and sorting waste – without a permit.

Co-defendant Patrick McDonagh, 27, of Hamilton Avenue in Sandycroft, of All Seasons Roofing and Guttering, admitted allowing controlled waste to be deposited and he ended up with a £1,428 penalty.

Mr Roberts said that case arose following the illegal deposit of waste on the land. Officials undertook a site visit in November and saw a number of vehicles entering the site with green waste on them and leaving empty.

They were refused access to the site, returned with police support and saw a shed filled with a large volume of wood; there were roofing tiles and felt in piles on the ground, and a pile of mixed household waste.

The farmer said it was material from landscaping friends and that it was for his own use.

During a second visit officers saw an All Seasons Roofing and Guttering van approaching containing waste – but the occupants said it was not being dropped off at the farm.

Officials also saw a large volume of green and wood waste behind a hedge which was heavily contaminated with plastics, felt, metal, a mattress and a significant volume of wood.

McCarrick said that it was a bonfire for fireworks night which he had put out straight away.

Interviewed, he said he allowed others to bring items to the farm but said they were for his own use and that no money exchanged hands.

A later visit showed that efforts had been made to clear some of the waste and he had since registered exemptions to receive materials such as clean tiles and non contaminated vegetation.

McDonagh, he said, had agreed that he had taken between four and seven loads there but no money changed hands.

Mr Roberts said that it was accepted that not all the waste at the farm had come from him.

Mark Dallas, for McCarrick, said that his client was a tenant farmer who had limited means and who had asked for items to be deposited so that they could be used on the land for recycling purposes.

Slate had been used to sort out a muddy lane, pallets had been put out to dry ready to be used as fuel and the wood in the shed was stored for wood chipping.

He was a father of two who ran a dairy farm but his milk cheque hardly covered the costs.

The defendant was improving the farm and he was recycling most of the items he had received.

“He used them to make improvements to the farm because of his limited income,” he said.

The defendant had co-operated with the investigation and had simply not been sure who the officials were and what their powers were when they first arrived.

Helen Dugdale, for McDonagh, said that her client had taken over the running of a roofing company and was building up a good reputation for himself.

She produced invoices which showed the skips he had hired at various sites where he worked.

He had not been trying to save money but when he was asked to take roofing materials to the farm so that they could be used by the farmer, he had agreed to do so.

Both said that they were not aware that they would be breaking the law by doing so.