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United States v. Lambert

ELR Citation: 13 ELR 20045
Nos. No. 81-255-Orl-Civ-R, 18 ERC 1294/(M.D. Fla., 06/03/1981)

The court refuses to preliminarily enjoin defendants from engaging in dredge and fill activities without a permit, allegedly in violation of §§301 and 404 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (FWPCA). The court first rules that it is likely that plaintiff will prevail on the merits of some of its claims. There is a reasonable probability that plaintiff will be able to prove that defendants' property contains wetlands, and that the wetlands are adjacent to the Banana River, a navigable body of water as defined by Corps of Engineers regulations. While the court determines that defendants' dredging of the central wetland has not resulted in the discharge of a pollutant within the meaning of §301 of the FWPCA, it does find that the evidence establishes violations of §301(a). Defendants placed a fill mat on the wetlands, dripped spoil on wetlands adjacent to the dredged sites, and constructed fill roads on the wetlands without a §404 permit. However, plaintiff has failed to establish that these activities will cause irreparable injury in the absence of a preliminary injunction. Therefore, the court denies its motion for such relief.

Counsel for Plaintiff
Elizabeth A. Jenkins, Ass't U.S. Attorney
501 Fed. Bldg., 80 N. Hughey Ave., Orlando FL 32801
(305) 420-6341

Counsel for Defendants
Allen C.D. Scott II
Maxwell & Scott
12 N. University Blvd., Jacksonville FL 32211
(904) 721-3280

Michael A. Sterlacci
Jenkins, Nystrom & Sterlacci
2033 M St. NW, Washington DC 20036
(202) 293-2505