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United States v. Maury

ELR Citation: 42 ELR 20192
Nos. Nos. 09-2305 et al., (3d Cir., 09/17/2012)

The Third Circuit upheld the conviction of a pipe foundry company and four of its employees for various environmental crimes, including conspiring to commit environmental pollution and worker safety violations, attempting to cover up or impede federal investigation of those violations, and substantive violations of the CWA and CAA. Specifically, the company and the employees were found to have illegally pumped contaminated water into storm drains and, as a result, into the Delaware River; to have unlawfully burned 50-gallon drums of paint waste in a cupola and emitted the fumes from those activities into the air; and to have attempted to cover up several work-related accidents at its facility, one of which resulted in the death of an employee. The jury also found that the defendants engaged in a conspiracy to commit these acts—and to impede the resulting federal investigation—in order to maximize productivity and profits at the plant. The defendants appealed from the jury's verdict, raising a variety of issues relating to pretrial discovery, the lower court's handling of the trial itself, the propriety of certain jury instructions, and the lower court's sentencing determinations. But the court found their arguments to be without merit and upheld the final convictions, judgments, and sentences of the lower court in all respects.