The UK Environment Agency has sentenced the first person to serve time in prison for illegally exporting electronic waste. Joe Benson exported 46 tonnes of broken cathode ray tube televisions and freezers to Nigeria, Ghana, the Ivory Coast and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Mr. Benson was sentenced to serve 16 months in prison under the terms of the Transfrontier Shipment of Waste Regulations 2007, which states it is illegal to send unused electronic waste from the United Kingdom to developing countries to be dumped and burned to extract precious metals. This was not the first time Mr. Benson was involved in illegally exporting electronic waste. He was previously convicted, along with six other defendants, of exporting hazardous waste to Nigeria in 2011 in one of the Agency’s largest illegal export cases.