A North Georgia businessman was sentenced to two months in prison after directing the dumping of over 100 drums and other containers of hazardous waste at a chicken house.
Amin Ali, 56, of Dalton, was convicted in June after he pleaded guilty to charges related to the disposing of hazardous waste without a permit and violating the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. In addition to the prison sentence, Ali will have one year of supervised release and is ordered to pay a $25,000 fine and restitution in the amount of $32,596.93, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia.
“Ali abused the North Georgia environment by illegally dumping hundreds of drums of waste,” U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan said in a release. “The environmental laws are designed to keep Georgia’s natural beauty available and safe for future generations and this office will work to enforce those laws.”
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Ali owned and controlled Goldstar Investment Group LLC, 7 Days Property Management Inc. and Rock Springs Farming LLC. Through those entities, Ali owned a warehouse formerly owned by a chemical company in Dalton and a farming property containing several old chicken houses in Rock Springs, Georgia.
In August 2021, Ali had over 100 drums and containers of chemicals, including hazardous materials, moved from the the warehouse property to the farming property. The containers were left in one of the old chicken houses. Some of the drums were left in an open trench to be buried, while the chemicals and hazardous materials spilled and leaked from others into the surrounding soil, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Testing of the drums and soil revealed the presence of benzene, lead and chromium. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the contents of the drums were reactive and ignitable.
“This sentence serves as a reminder that if you choose to undermine environmental regulations by illegally dumping hazardous waste, you will be held accountable for your crimes,” Special Agent in Charge Chuck Carfagno, of EPA CID Southeast Area Branch, said in a release. “EPA and its state partners worked together to address the environmental problems and bring the defendant to justice.”
The Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office, Catoosa County Code Enforcement, Catoosa County Fire, Georgia Environmental Protection Division Emergency Response and Division Hazardous Waste Management Section and EPA Emergency Response responded to the scene after being alerted through a call to emergency services. The cost of clean-up exceeded $500,000.
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