A fly-tipper who was caught red handed dumping garden waste on the side of a motorway has been ordered to pay more than £1,000.

Michael McDonagh off-loaded a quantity of tree cuttings on land alongside the slip road of Junction 17 of the M25, Maple Cross, on February 3.

But the 51-year-old was spotted by a Three Rivers District Council Environmental Protection Officer who was passing by.

The officer challenged him at the roadside, whereupon he denied the offence and provided her with a false name and address.

He was traced via a DVLA check of the vehicle and was prosecuted.

Watford Observer: The dumped garden waste (photo Three Rivers District Council)The dumped garden waste (photo Three Rivers District Council)

McDonagh, of West Hyde, Rickmansworth, initially failed to attend court and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

He was arrested and brought before the court on September 7 when he pleaded guilty to fly-tipping.

McDonagh was fined £480 and ordered to pay the council’s costs of £666 and a victim surcharge of £48.

Cllr Phil Williams, lead member for environmental services, climate change, and sustainability, said: “By continuing to prosecute those who fly-tip across our district, we send out a clear message that fly-tipping will not be tolerated in Three Rivers.

“Not only is it an eye-sore for those who see it, and costs money to clear it, but it can have a significant impact on the environment. My thanks to all involved for their hard work in securing this conviction.”

​Sign up for our weekly crime and court newsletter here and keep up to date with the latest crime news on our dedicated Facebook page here.