A recent ruling in Chattanooga, Tennessee by a federal judge sentenced three men to prison for violating the Clean Air Act. The violation resulted from a demolition project that polluted the area with asbestos. Asbestos is a known human carcinogen directly linked to mesothelioma.
The three men convicted were Don Fillers, David Wood and James Mathis. The men were charged as a result of a demolition project by Fillers company, Watkins Street Project, at the Standard-Coosa-Thatcher plant, a former textile mill. During the demolition, asbestos dust was released into the air which contaminated the work-site, nearby homes and a day care center.
Due to the high toxicity of asbestos and the fact that it is considered a carcinogen, laws such as the Clean Air Act have been passed to help prevent asbestos exposures and regulations are in place for safe asbestos removal and abatement. The Chattanooga men in this case disregarded these laws and procedures. Investigating the case, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found that the three men hired homeless men and other untrained workers to remove the asbestos at the demolition site. As a result of their illegal actions, the asbestos was improperly removed and fibers were released into the air, putting the workers and other persons in the area at serious risk of exposure.
Fillers was sentenced to four years in prison. The prison sentences for Wood and Mathis were set at 20 months and 18 months, respectively. Mr. Fillers was assessed a personal fine of $20,000 and his company’s restitution is an additional $28,000.
If you believe you or someone you love has been exposed to asbestos due to illegal asbestos removal, and is now suffering from mesothelioma, asbestosis or another asbestos-related illness, contact the New Jersey and Pennsylvania asbestos law firm of Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler. Our asbestos attorneys, compassionate and knowledgeable advocates for victims of asbestos exposure, have handled more than 10,000 cases. Call us today at (215) 569-4000 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.