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Green Party councillor fined for not clearing up rubbish

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Green Party councillor fined for not clearing up rubbish
File photo: Adrian Scottow/Flickr
10:21 CET+01:00
A politician for Switzerland's Green Party has learned the hard way that no good comes from harming the environment.

Stéphane Barbey, a local councillor for Montreux in the Vaud canton, was ordered by a court last year to clear up the waste which had piled up on his balcony, and has now been fined for failing to do so in time.

The councillor's tenant, who lived in the lower floor of his house in Les Avants, just outside Montreux, complained about water coming in through his ceiling and problems with damp. The excessive amount of garbage on Barbey's balcony was found to be the cause. 

The rubbish piles, which also extended to the politician's garden, consisted of old tyres, plastic and metal objects, and even a gas cooker.

The 57-year-old councillor was issued with a deadline to clear away the rubbish, which he claimed to have done. But at the start of November, an inspection found that the rubbish was still there, 20 Minutes reported, and prosecutors charged Barbey with failing to abide with the deadline.

He was handed a fine of 1,000 francs on Wednesday, plus 525 francs to cover the costs of the damage. The defendant was given ten days to raise an objection.

However, the pile of rubbish in his garden and balcony doesn't seem to have damaged the eco-politician's career. He was re-elected in February, despite the fact that the case was ongoing.

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