CHARITY BINS

REPORTER: Andrea Burns

Chris says “You really have to wonder what these people are thinking about when they do it, it's just mindless”

Jim says “they're going to get caught”

The illegal dumping of rubbish costs West Australian taxpayers a staggering TEN MILLION DOLLARS a year.... and increasingly, it's Perth's needy that're picking up the tab.

Chris says “they're robbing people who have disabilities and want to work” Chris Jones is the CEO of Good Samaritans Industries. He says every week, mountains of junk are dumped outside his charity's five hundred bins by people too lazy to dispose of them properly. Rubbish the Sammies have to pay to remove. “Dumping is costing the business around 250-300 000/ yr”

And we capture vision of people like this pair - driving expensive cars, she puts only one bag in the bin, the rest they just chuck at the bin.

The pair does trip after trip, hurling bags, boxes -piles of stuff outside the collection bin. Chris says charity bins have become the new tip for the lazy.“the knock on is more and more councils are banning bins in public places because ratepayers complain about the rubbish and how unsightly it is, local councils don't want ratepayers complaining so therefore the simple solution is ban the bin”

Scavenging the seedy bi-product of dumping donations outside bins. Remember, it's the poor they're stealing from -the greed is breathtaking.

The more people scavenge, the further the mess is spread. Chris says “on the night this footage was taken it rained and we were left with a soggy pile of rubbish that had to be taken to the tip - so it was no use to anyone? No use to anyone.”And these are the people that are being ripped off. In the case of Good Sammies, donations put inside their bins or dropped off at their shops provide employment for the disabled.

Twenty eight years a police officer, Jim Dabelstein is now on bin duty for the Department of the Environment.

Jim says it's an operation as serious as any he attempted in his CIB career. “To get back into the day to day chasing the baddie, if you like to put it that way, it's good”

Security vision like this provides intelligence; there are plans to put even more secret cameras in, around charity bins. Scavengers can face criminal charges. Jim plans to conduct "stings", just like police to catch people illegally dumping junk. “The penalties come in 2 forms, there's an infringement of 200 dollars and there's also a thousand dollars for the more serious offences”

Charities say they're grateful for every real donation - but if items won't easily fit inside a bin, drop them off at a charity shop - or call - many charities will collect.

Do the wrong thing, Jim says, he'll get you.

Authorities say if you see someone dumping rubbish at a bin or scavenging , get as much information about the person as possible, like car registrations and a description - but don't approach them. Instead, call:

Pollution Watch on 1300 784 782, during business hours.