Executive Of Glasgow Kentucky Aluminum Facility Guilty Of Conspiracy And Tampering With EPA Monitoring Devices Required Under Clean Air Act
– Admits to tampering with air pollution control equipment at J.L French Facility in Glasgow, Kentucky
LOUISVILLE, KY -Daniel Evanoff, age 59, of Plymouth, Wisconsin, has pled guilty to federal charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States and rendering inaccurate a monitoring device required under the Clean Air Act, today, announced David J. Hale, United States Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky.
A federal grand jury returned a two count Indictment on September 7, 2011 charging that between 2007 and November 2009, Evanoff and other coconspirators agreed to make materially false statements, agreed to tamper with and render inaccurate a monitoring device required under the Clean Air Act, and agreed to defraud the lawful and legitimate functions of the EPA in enforcing federal environmental regulations. As the Indictment alleges, Evanoff and others agreed to create false records concealing that J.L. French, LLC, improperly exceeded production and air emissions limits. Count two of the indictment alleges that Evanoff directed others to install a temperature resistor on air pollution control equipment to create a false temperature reading and to make it appear as though the pollution control equipment was operating properly.
Evanoff served as the North American Alloy Manager for J.L. French which operated a secondary aluminum production facility in Glasgow, Kentucky. J.L. French produced die-cast aluminum parts for the automobile industry. To produce die-cast aluminum, J.L. French operated furnaces that melted scrap aluminum, which emitted possibly harmful emissions and particulate matter into the air. The EPA has determined that these sources require regulation due to the fact that they emit various hazardous air pollutants, including volatile organic compounds such as dioxin/furans, benzene, styrene, acrylonitrile, methylene chloride, napthalene, and formaldehyde; hazardous inorganic “acid gas” compounds such as hydrogen chloride (HCl), hydrogen fluoride (HF), and chlorine (Cl2); and hazardous metals such as antimony, arsenic, lead, manganese, beryllium, cadmium, chromium, cobalt, mercury, nickel, and selenium.
Environmental emissions testing established that J.L. French could not exceed 80 ladles of molten aluminum per day. As part of the criminal agreement, alleged in the Indictment, several coconspirators under reported the amount of aluminum produced on documents required to be maintained for the EPA. The alleged under reporting made it appear that J.L. French had not exceeded 80 ladles of molten aluminum per day. However, emails sent by coconspirators to Evanoff showed actual production exceeding what was reported on the EPA records on multiple occasions.
In addition, the Indictment details that during 2007, Evanoff instructed and directed coconspirators to install a temperature resistor that would falsely indicate a lower inlet temperature on the bag house filter system (generic name for an air pollution control device). That allowed the bag house unit to operate at a temperature exceeding limits allowed by emissions testing and appear to be in compliance with EPA regulations and the Permit.
Evanoff also instructed that the temperature resistor be removed to prevent its discovery by inspectors from the Kentucky Department of Air Quality (KDAQ).
At sentencing, Evanoff faces a maximum potential penalty of seven years in prison, a $500,000 fine, and supervised release for a period of no more than 3 years.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Joshua Judd and Randy Ream, and it was investigated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, Criminal Investigations.