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PA COLORADO METAL RECYCLING FIRM AND OFFICERS INDICTED FOR VIOLATING RCRA
Release Date: 09/04/98
FOR RELEASE: FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 4, 1998
COLORADO METAL RECYCLING FIRM AND OFFICERS INDICTED
FOR VIOLATING RCRA
Newell Recycling Inc (Newell), a Denver scrap metal recycling firm, was indicted on Aug. 25, in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado in Denver, for knowingly endangering employees by illegally storing and disposing of gasoline in violation of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). In addition, three company officials: Gilbert R. Robert Triesch, Jr., Vice President; Joe L. Fulton, Vice President and General Manager; and David Teague, Yard Foreman were all charged with the illegal storage and disposal of hazardous waste. As part of its business, Newell ground-up approximately 200 automobiles a day and sold the metal as scrap. The charges allege that despite company policy, cars with partially full gas tanks were sometimes accepted for recycling. The charges further state that gasoline waste from recycled cars was collected in a pit and then disposed of by pumping it into the ground. On Oct. 30, 1995, three employees were working in the pit without protective gear when gasoline fumes ignited leaving one employee hospitalized with severe burns to his face and arms. If convicted, Newell faces a maximum fine up to $1 million on the endangerment charge and up to $500,000 on each of the RCRA counts. The individual defendants face maximum sentences of up to five years in prison and/or a maximum fine of up to $250,00 fine on each RCRA count. This investigation was conducted by EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division, EPA’s National Enforcement Investigations Center and the FBI.