A Byron builder and company have pleaded guilty to several charges each relating to illegal work within Cape Byron Marine Park.
A Byron builder and company have pleaded guilty to several charges each relating to illegal work within Cape Byron Marine Park.

Illegal marine park works land builder, company in court

A BUILDER and a company will next month be sentenced for illegal work within Cape Byron Marine Park.

Byron Bay company Master Alchemy Pty Ltd and builder Ben Jolliffe, 46, have each pleaded guilty to carrying out dredging work, carrying out reclamation work and harming protected marine vegetation, all three without a permit.

For both the company and Mr Jolliffe, a further charge of damaging or taking habitat in a special purpose zone was withdrawn when the case went before Byron Bay Local Court on Monday.

All charges against a second man were withdrawn.

According to court documents, the NSW Department of Primary Industries brought the charges against each party in relation to work carried out in East Belongil Creek near 4 Childe St.

The work is said to have been undertaken between October 1 and December 31, 2017.

The work involved "the placement of 11 footings in water lands", concrete being deposited to secure six footings, the use of "unconsolidated sediment" to fill and reclaim about 100 sqm of water land without the appropriate permits, court documents said.

The department also said in Court Attendance Notices eight grey mangroves were cut, while light was prevented from reaching four more after a wharf was constructed above them.

The trunks of 30 further grey mangroves were covered with sediment, "rendering its peg roots unable to transfer oxygen".

The matter will return to court on February 17.

Master Alchemy Pty Ltd last year lodged a construction certificate for works on existing sea wall structure at the same Childe St site, and this was approved by Byron Shire Council.


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