A South Tyneside woman has been fined after ignoring a notice to clear up waste from her property.
Michelle Nelson, 39, of St Jude's Terrace in South Shields was convicted in her absence of failing to comply with a Notice issued under the provision of the Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 by not removing items likely to harbour pests. She was fined £200 by magistrates and ordered to pay costs of £100 and a victim surcharge of £34.
South Tyneside Council took action after receiving a report of an accumulation of domestic waste in the back yard of Miss Nelson's property. A neighbour also advised that her bin was never put out for collection.
A visit from a member of the Council's Environmental Enforcement Team found around 20 black bin bags in the small back yard and a notice was served on the defendant to clear the waste. However, Miss Nelson failed to clear the rubbish or respond to further attempts to contact her to discuss the issue.
A spokesman for South Tyneside Council said: "As well as being unsightly, rubbish left lying around poses a public health risk as it can attract vermin. It is the responsibility of residents to control the build up of waste on their properties.
"We do everything we can to work with residents to sort out these problems and going to court is always a last resort. But when notices are left ignored, we have no choice but to prosecute. We will take action against the tiny minority of people who fail to comply with the notices we serve against them."