William Madill Kerr, a farmer from Co. Antrim appeared in court in Ballymena charged with polluting a local water source.
He pleaded guilty to the charges at Ballymena Magistrates court on Wednesday 25th April, as reported by ballymenatimes.com, and received a fine of £750 in total (€860.60). The charges were brought against Mr. Kerr after water quality inspectors had responded to a report of slurry running off a laneway and into a tributary of the River Maine in February 2016.
This report left to a subsequent investigation and the discharge was traced back to the farm of Mr. Kerr. Inspectors upon entering the yard discovered the farmyards were covered with a layer of slurry, caused by overflowing tanks. Animals were also discovered roaming the farmyard.
A dye test confirmed the entry of the farm’s slurry into the local water source, leading to the charges against the farmer. The waterway, the courts heard, was impacted for a distance of more than 700ms from the farm. Samples taken at the time of the reports showed it contained discharge which was toxic and harmful to fish.
Mr. Kerr was fined £250 (€286.87) for knowingly polluting a waterway and a further £500 (€573.73).