The Shire of Augusta Margaret River is satisfied with the outcome of a court case in Busselton, in which a Karridale property owner has been found guilty of three separate charges.Brett Murrell, owner of the Karridale property known as Mindful Earth Sanctuary has been convicted of two charges of undertaking development without approval on his property under the Planning and Development Act 2005. These included using the land as a camping ground and for large scale events.
The third charge related to undertaking building work in contravention of the Building Act 2011.
He has been ordered to pay fines of $117,500 and $14,606 in costs to the Shire of Augusta Margaret River.
The Shire commenced the prosecutions in early 2022.
In imposing the fine, Magistrate Tyers confirmed the serious nature of the offence and the significant scale and impact of the offending, noting the defendant was aware the development had no approval and was aware of the substantial risks that have now materialised.
Magistrate Tyers further found that Mr Murrell showed no remorse for his actions nor regard for his neighbours.
Shire President Paula Cristoffanini said the Court decision confirmed the Shire’s position that development rules must be followed in the interests of public safety.
“This has been a long and involved process, however we’re satisfied with the court’s decision,” Paula said.
“The case serves as a reminder to us all of the importance of following the rules to ensure developments and events are safe, environmentally sound, and that any impacts to neighbours and the wider community are well-managed.”
The Shire began receiving numerous complaints about illegal camping and events on the Mindful Earth site in January 2022 and commenced legal action against the owner of Mindful Earth in April 2022.
“I urge all Property owners to contact our Shire to understand and determine the appropriate approvals before starting any development or events,” the Shire President said.
The maximum penalty under the Planning and Development Act 2005 for Commencing Development Without a Development Approval is $200,000 and $25,000 for each day during which the offence continues.
16 Feb 2023 Topic Type
Karridale and KurdardupShare this page
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