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United States v. Frezzo Bros.

Citation: 9 ELR 20139
No. No. 78-218, 461 F. Supp. 266/12 ERC 1481/(E.D. Pa., 11/22/1978)

The court denies motions for judgment of acquittal or a new trial by defendants, a corporation and two of its officers that were found guilty by a jury of willfully or negligently discharging pollutants without a permit in violation of §§ 301(a) and 309(c) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act. The court rejects defendants' argument that the issuance of an administrative enforcement order or the institution of a civil suit by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency is a prerequisite to the filing of a criminal prosecution under the Act. Furthermore, even though there were no applicable effluent standards, defendants' discharge of pollutants was unlawful under § 301(a) because they never obtained or applied for a discharge permit. The court rejects defendants' motions to suppress and rules that the evidence of pollutant discharges from defendants' mushroom compost operations is more than sufficient to support the verdict.

Counsel for Plaintiff
Peter F. Vaira, U.S Attorney; Bruce J. Chasan, Ass't U.S. Attorney
3310 U.S. Courthouse, Independence Mall West
601 Market St., Philadelphia PA 19106
(215) 597-2556

Michael P. Carlton
Land and Natural Resources Division
Department of Justice, Washington DC 20530
(202) 633-2793

Counsel for Defendants
William J. Gallagher
MacElree, Harvey, Gallagher & Kean, Ltd.
17 W. Miner St., P.O. Box 657, West Chester PA 19380
(215) 436-0100