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Alabama Foundry Guilty on Pollution Counts

BIRMINGHAM, Ala., Dec. 19 (UPI) — An Alabama cast iron manufacturer has pleaded guilty to nine felony counts of knowingly violating the Clean Water Act, U.S. officials say.

McWane Inc., one of the largest foundries in the country, pleaded guilty Friday in federal district court in Birmingham, Ala., for environmental crimes that occurred at its Birmingham, Ala., facility, McWane Cast Iron Pipe Company, Justice Department officials said.

James Delk, the former general manager and vice president of the Birmingham plant, pleaded guilty to eight counts of negligently violating the Clean Water Act. Additionally, former plant manager Michael Devine pleaded guilty to five counts of negligently violating the Clean Water Act.

Under the plea agreement, McWane was sentenced to pay a $4 million criminal fine and serve a five-year term of probation.

“This is the fifth time that the McWane corporation, a McWane facility, or a company manager has been sentenced for committing environmental crimes,” Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, said in a statement. “McWane’s multiple violations of the nation’s environmental laws is inexcusable, and McWane needs to take immediate steps to ensure that it fully complies with the law.”

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

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