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MARYLAND TRASH COMPANIES AND COMPANY OFFICIAL PLEAD GUILTY
Release Date: 06/24/99
FOR RELEASE: THURSDAY, JUNE 24, 1999
MARYLAND TRASH COMPANIES AND COMPANY OFFICIAL
A.W. Stevens and Sons Waste Disposal Systems Inc. (A.W. Stevens), of Prince George’s County, Md.; St. Mary’s Disposal Systems Inc., of St. Mary’s County, Md.; and Michael W. Stevens, Vice President of A.W. Stevens; all pleaded guilty on June 15 in U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland in Greenbelt to federal crimes that arose from the operation of an illegal solid waste disposal operation. A.W. Stevens and St. Mary’s Disposal both pleaded guilty to a 17 count indictment that alleged conspiracy, false claims, false statements and Clean Water Act violations. Michael Stevens pleaded guilty to one count of filing false claims against the United States Navy. The defendants operated illegal solid waste transfer stations in Prince George’s and St. Mary’s counties. These stations did not have permits to operate, and were used to ship solid waste from the Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Indian Head Naval Ordinance Station and the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland to Virginia. The companies’ contracts with the Navy called for the waste to be disposed at facilities in the District of Columbia and Maryland which had higher landfill tipping fees than the Virginia facilities. The defendants submitted false papers to the Navy that claimed the waste was disposed in Maryland and the District of Columbia then billed the government for the higher cost of disposal. As a result, the Navy was overcharged by approximately $800,000. The companies also washed trucks at the illegal transfer stations, causing pollution to run into a tributary of the Potomac River. As part of their pleas, the companies have agreed to pay a $1.3 million federal criminal fine, a $2 million federal civil penalty and pay fines of $80,000 each to Prince George’s and St. Mary’s counties. When sentenced, Michael Stevens faces a maximum sentence of up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000. The case was investigated by EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the FBI, the Prince George’s County Department of Public Health, and was prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Maryland Attorney General’s Office.