- A Los Angeles trucker working for New Evolution Trucking was arrested on charges of attempted grand theft and felony recycling fraud after agents from the California Department of Justice’s Recycling Fraud Team noticed the driver took a route that bypassed the CDFA border checkpoint in Yermo, according to CalRecycle.
- Driver Carlos Flores did not have the bill of lading or Imported Material Report required to bring the load into California, which consisted of 7,260 pounds of aluminum and 3,360 pounds of plastic used beverage containers with a potential California Redemption Value of $15,464. Flores was released on his own recognizance and awaits arraignment in San Bernardino.
- This is the second time in three months that a New Evolution driver has been arrested for the illegal transport of used beverage containers into California from Nevada.
Many drivers believe they can find loopholes in the bottle redemption system, and this particular crime has a long history, especially in California. In fact, such attempts to cheat the system have prompted legal measures including a 2012 bill to identify people who illegally transport recyclables into California.
The bottle redemption program is already having a hard enough time as redemption centers are paying out more than they are spending to process the containers. Stakeholders are scrambling to keep the program going, and obstacles such as thwarting criminals are creating significant headaches in the process.
Among legal safeguards to protect California's program are precertification training of recycling center owners, probationary reviews of recycling centers, oversight of certified processors, and monitoring and tracking of imported materials.