Two importers convicted for illegal imports of hazardous e-waste

Hong Kong (HKSAR) -      Two importers who illegally imported hazardous electronic-waste (e-waste) from the United States (US) and Korea were convicted and fined $75,000 in total at Fanling Magistrates' Court today (January 10) for contravening the Waste Disposal Ordinance.

     A spokesman for the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) said that the relevant container from the US arrived in Hong Kong in May 2016 containing waste flat panel display units and waste batteries, while the one from Korea arrived in June 2016, containing waste flat panel display units.

     The spokesman added that the intercepted e-waste contains heavy metals (such as mercury, lead and nickel) and toxic organic compounds. Improper handling of the wastes can cause harm to the environment and people's health. The EPD strictly controls the import and export movement of hazardous waste according to the Waste Disposal Ordinance and is committed to combating the illegal import of hazardous waste into Hong Kong.

In 2016, the EPD prosecuted 25 cases of illegal import or export of hazardous e-waste. All the containers illegally imported were returned to the states of origin following international practice.

     The spokesman reminded importers of the waste recycling trade not to illegally import any hazardous e-waste into Hong Kong. In accordance with the Waste Disposal Ordinance, it is an offence for anyone to import or export hazardous waste without valid permits.

First-time offenders are liable to a maximum fine of HK$200,000 and six months' imprisonment.

Published on: 2017-01-10

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