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Minnesota Company Sentenced for Violating the Clean Water Act

Release Date: 11/13/2003
Contact Information:

Luke C. Hester 202-564-7818 /

(11/13/03) Continental Engineering and Manufacturing, Inc. (CEM) of Chaska, Minn., was sentenced to pay $55,000 in fines and restitution on Oct.30 for violating the Clean Water Act by dumping waste material into a storm drain which empties into East Chaska Creek and then into the Minnesota River. The former chief executive officer of CEM directed two employees to dump into the storm drain the contents of 30 drums of industrial wastes that included cutting machine oils. Dumping industrial chemicals into drains that lead to surface waters can harm fish and wildlife and can also make the waters unsafe for human recreation and use as a source of municipal drinking water. On several occasions prior to the dumping, the Carver County Environmental Services Department had instructed the company and its CEO to properly dispose of the accumulated liquid wastes. The case was investigated by EPA's Criminal Investigation Division (Chicago). The case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Minneapolis.