If you dump garbage, waste, or other material on public or private property in California, it could cost you plenty.
California Penal Code 374.3 makes it illegal to dump waste matter:
- upon a public or private highway or road, including any portion of the right-of-way thereof, or
- in or upon private property into or upon which the public is admitted by easement or license, or
- upon private property without the consent of the owner, or
- in or upon a public park or other public property other than property designated or set aside for that purpose by the governing board or body having charge of that property.
Similarly, it is also a violation of Penal Code 374.3 to “place, deposit, or dump” the following materials on any of the property described above:
The penalties upon conviction for a violation of Section 374.3 are as follows:
- First offense: a mandatory fine of not less than $250 nor more than $1,000
- Second offense: a mandatory fine of not less than $500 nor more than $1,500
- Third and subsequent offenses: a mandatory fine of not less than $750 nor more than $3,000.
If the court finds that the waste matter placed, deposited, or dumped was used tires, the fines listed above will be doubled.
Larger Quantities Illegally Dumped = Much Larger Penalties
If you are convicted of illegally dumping “commercial quantities” of waste, the penalties are significantly greater and can include jail time. Penal Code Section 374.3(h)(1).
“Commercial quantities” means “an amount of waste matter generated in the course of a trade, business, profession, or occupation, or an amount equal to or in excess of one cubic yard.”
A conviction for illegal dumping of commercial quantities of waste is a California misdemeanor. Penalties can include up to six months in Jail and the following fines:
- First offense: a mandatory fine of not less than $1,000 nor more than $3,000
- Second offense: a mandatory fine of not less than $3,000 nor more than $6,000
- Third and subsequent offenses: a mandatory fine of not less than $6,000 nor more than $10,000.
If you are facing charges of illegal dumping, it can cost you a lot of money and land you in jail if you are convicted. We can help. Call one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys today to discuss your case.