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West Virginia Environmental News: 2 admit to illegally storing hazardous waste

West Virginia Environmental lawyer news: Beckley man pleads guilty to illegally storing hazardous waste at chrome plating shop.

06/08/2010 // West Palm Beach, FL, USA // Tara Monks // Tara Monks

Charleston, WV – A Beckley man pleaded guilty on Thursday, June 3, 2010, to illegally storing hazardous waste. The US Environmental Protection Agency issued a press release on the news, explaining that Christopher Shawn Mills, 36, admitted to involvement with the illegal storage of chrome plating materials.

Mills worked at Mills Plating shop located in Beckley from 2004 to 2006. Court documents report that Mills and his partner, Rodney T. Hoffman, 43, also of Beckley, cleaned out chrome plating tanks and stored the waste on site. The waste was illegally stored without a permit.

Both men confessed they knew the material was hazardous when they stored it in open containers and vats from October 2006 to February 2007. Hoffman pleaded guilty to the offense in April 2010.

The situation was discovered by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection in February 207.

Upon the discovery, the US EPA conducted a cleanup of the site.

Mills faces up to five years in prison and a $50,000 fine per day of the violation. His sentencing is scheduled for September 22, 2010. Hoffman’s sentencing is scheduled for August 18, 2010.

The EPA conducted the investigation, with aide from the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection. United States District Judge Irene C. Berger is presiding over the proceedings.

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