On May 11, Prime Plating, a metal finishing business in Maple Grove, Minn.; Scott Hanson, its owner; and two other individuals, Sam Opare-Addo and Arlynn Hanson, were each charged with conspiracy to violate the Clean Water Act (CWA) and multiple counts of violating the CWA.
The Prime Plating business, Scott Hanson and Opare-Addo were also charged with conspiracy to make a false statement, and Opare-Addo was charged with three counts of making a false statement.
In June and July of 2003, the defendants allegedly conspired to discharge industrial wastewater from the facility without having a functioning pre-treatment system for its waste, as required by law.
During this period, the defendants allegedly discharged untreated wastewater directly into sewers using pumps and garden hoses, and allegedly conspired to hide the illegal discharges from state and federal regulators.
Discharging plating wastes into sewers can prevent the proper treatment of sewage at treatment facilities. The case was investigated by the Chicago Area Office of EPA's Criminal Investigation Division and the Hennepin County Department of Environmental Services with the assistance of EPA's National Enforcement Investigations Center.
It is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Minneapolis.