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Jan 4, 2012 12:29 PM by Release

City of Pineville sentenced in illegal discharge case

BATON ROUGE - The city of Pineville was sentenced today in the U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana in Alexandria, stemming from an illegal discharge from a pumping station that occurred in September 2008. The city entered a guilty plea back in October 2011.

Following the heavy rainfall from Hurricane Gustav in 2008, the city of Pineville's Huffman Creek Pumping Station illegally discharged hydraulic fluid over the levee and into Bayou Maria, which ultimately empties into the Red River. An investigation conducted by the Louisiana Environmental Crimes Task Force, comprised of the U.S. EPA's Criminal Investigation Division, DEQ's Criminal Investigation Division, Louisiana State Police and Federal Bureau of Investigation found that the discharge was a result of pumps at the city of Pineville's Huffman Creek Pumping Station, which were known by city personnel to be in disrepair and leaking diesel fuel and hydraulic fluid.

The Honorable Judge Dee Drell of the U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana, sentenced the city of Pineville to a $15,000 fine and one year unsupervised probation. As a condition of probation the city was ordered to put in place an environmental management system to detect and prevent future violations, a complaint hotline for employees and regular employee training in federal, state and local environmental regulations. In addition, the city is required to publish an apology in The Alexandria Town Talk newspaper.

The case is being prosecuted by United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley and Assistant United States Attorney Joseph G. Jarzabek.

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