Environmental Criminal Law

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Youngstown, Ohio, Contractor Sentenced to 28 Months in Prison for Wastewater Dumping Scheme

We previously reported on the federal criminal and State of Ohio enforcement actions arising from the release of tens of thousands of gallons of hydraulic fracturing waste into a Youngstown, Ohio, area tributary by Hard Rock...more

Fracking Contractor Sentenced to 28 Months in Prison for Clean Water Act Violation

A federal court in Ohio has handed down a 28-month prison sentence and imposed a $25,000 fine for dumping fracking waste in violation of the Clean Water Act....more

The Elephant in the Room: Ivory Ban Seeks to Curb Poaching

With the June passage of New York Senate bill S7890 and Assembly bill A10143, the Empire State’s elephant and mammoth ivory and rhino horn trade may be approaching extinction. The legislation, which will take effect...more

Previous Environmental Convictions Considered In Jailing Of Supervisor For OHSA Offences: Court’s Reasons Now Available

A supervisor’s previous violations of the Environmental Protection Act, and failure to pay more than $50,000 in fines for those violations, were a factor in the court’s decision to send her to jail for Occupational Health and...more

What Is A Bird Worth To A Regulator?

What is a wild bird worth? Does it matter whether it is a Bald or Golden Eagle, of which here are few, or ducks and pelicans, of which there are enough (as least the ducks) so that hunters may shoot them for dinner. Does it...more

Feds’ Reliance on Environmental Activism Underscores Need for Lacey Act Compliance

The search warrant recently executed by U.S. Customs and Fish and Wildlife Service agents on a Virginia-based flooring wholesaler surrounded allegations that the company had illegally imported wood in violation of the Lacey...more

What Defense Counsel Can Learn From The W.Va. Spill

For the companies and their lawyers, the headlines were awful and kept getting worse: 300,000 people suffering without drinking water; changes in corporate ownership just days before the chemical spill; and accusations that a...more

D.Lgs. 231/2001 Aggiornamento Normativo E Giurisprudenziale

Si riporta di seguito una breve rassegna dei provvedimenti maggiormente significativi in materia di responsabilità amministrativa degli enti ex D.Lgs. 231/2001. CAPACITA' ESIMENTE DEL MODELLO - CASSAZIONE PENALE....more

EPA's Draft Strategic Plan Acknowledges Reduction in Enforcement Resources

In November 2013, EPA issued its draft Strategic Plan for 2014-2018. EPA received comments on the Plan through January 3, 2014, although the comments will probably not lead to significant changes....more

Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013

On 1 December 2013 the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 (the “Act”) came into force in England and Wales. The Act aims to combat the recent increase in metal theft which is being spurred on partly by rising commodity costs. The...more

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Issues Rule Extending Terms of Permits for Incidental Eagle Take to Thirty-Years

Timing of Rule’s Publication is Another Indication of Renewed Focus on Avian Compliance Risk at Wind Farms - Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (“USFWS”) published a final rule extending the maximum term for...more

U.S. Fish And Wildlife Service Imposes First-Ever Criminal Penalties For Bird Deaths Caused By Wind Projects

The first criminal case ever prosecuted under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) against a wind energy company for bird deaths resulted recently in Duke Energy Renewables (Duke Energy) reaching a settlement with the U.S....more

For the First Time, U.S. Extends MBTA Enforcement to Renewables

On November 22, 2013, the Department of Justice announced its first prosecution of a wind farm operation for violations of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA), a criminal statute governing take of over 1000 species of birds....more

The Criminal Side of Fracking: Individuals and Companies Face State and Federal Criminal Charges related to Handling and Disposal...

On Monday, October 28, 2013, the Clean Water Action national environmental organization (“CWA”) filed a federal civil lawsuit against Waste Treatment Corporation for the alleged illegal disposal of hundreds of thousands of...more

Adapting to a New Era of Strict Criminal Liability Enforcement under Pennsylvania’s Environmental Laws

Attorney General Kathleen Kane’s recent actions concerning the application of strict liability criminal offenses under Pennsylvania’s environmental laws present a new challenge for the oil and gas industry in Pennsylvania....more

Migratory Bird Treaty Act Concerns Extend to Solar Plants

The Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) has a famously broad scope, outlawing the taking of over 1000 species of birds, ranging from hummingbirds to robins and crows. It is also a criminal statute, although most violations are...more

Notice of Adoption of Local Law 2 of 2013, Town of Ovid, Seneca County, N. Y.

Notice of Adoption of Local Law 2 of 2013 Town of Ovid Seneca County, N. Y. NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that after a public hearing duly held in the Town of Ovid, New York (the "Town") in accordance with law, the Town Board...more

Legal links of interest for the week ending June 7, 2013

Steven Getman: Legal links of interest for the week ending June 7, 2013 Attorney Steven Getman reports on some of the stories about courts, the law and lawyers in the news this past week: City's red light camera program may...more

The New 2013 Eagle Conservation Plan Guidance: Certainty for the Industry or Dust in the Wind?

The new Eagle Conservation Plan Guidance issued by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (“FWS”) presents an interesting question for wind project developers and operators – does it really provide greater certainty and reduce...more

NH Supreme Court Says Unlawful Operation Of Solid Waste Facility Or Septic System Can Result In Criminal Penalties

On March 20, 2013, the New Hampshire Supreme Court issued a decision in State v. Guay, holding that the defendant’s unlawful operation of a solid waste facility or septic system can result not just in civil fines, but also in...more

Federal Charges Filed for Ohio Drilling Waste Release; Ohio Legislation Proposes Increased Penalties

Early last week, we covered the response of Ohio regulators to an alleged release of hydraulic fracturing waste into a Youngstown, Ohio area tributary by Hard Rock Excavating (Hard Rock), an affiliate of oil and gas player...more

Discharge of Drilling Waste in Ohio Triggers Civil and Criminal Enforcement Actions; Heightens Scrutiny of State Regulatory...

A release of approximately 40,000 gallons of oil and gas operations waste into a Youngstown, Ohio area storm drain flowing into the Mahoning River is igniting a call for tighter regulatory oversight and more transparent...more

Environmental Crimes and Punishment

A few years ago the president of a well-known food brand was convicted and sentenced to serve nine months in federal prison for failing to stop his plant from engaging in a practice that he knew was a violation of...more

White Collar Watch - January 2013

In This Issue: - Death and Taxes? Recent Supreme Court Arguments in Gabelli v. SEC Concerning a General Statute of Limitations for Civil Fines May Also Affect How Long the IRS Has to Assess Penalties - Avoiding...more

Disposing Of Pharmaceutical Waste: Some Progress

In 2008, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) seemed to be on the road to providing some much-needed clarity to hospitals and other medical facilities concerning the disposal of pharmaceuticals by proposing that...more

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