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January 19, 2011

BOSTON, Mass. - An Everett man was charged today in federal court with knowingly misusing a federally-regulated pesticide - malathion - and spraying it in Boston area homes. Malathion is a pesticide used primarily in large scale farming.

JOSIMAR FERREIRA, 36, was indicted on 16 counts of violating the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) by knowingly applying in residences a pesticide approved only for outdoor use, and with one count of making a false statement to EPA agents.

According to the indictment, Ferreira ran an extermination company in Everett called TVF Pest Control, Inc. The company was in the business of applying pesticide in homes and business throughout the Boston area. It is alleged that, at any given time in the last three years, the company had a staff of three to five individuals who were hired and paid by Ferreira. Although Massachusetts law required the company to have at least one licensed contractor on staff, Ferreira and at least seven company employees allegedly failed the state licensing exam, and consequently the company operated without a licenced applicator.

According to the indictment, Ferreira routinely applied malathion for bed bug jobs in homes, even though its indoor use is strictly forbidden. According to a criminal complaint filed in June 2010, in one particular instance, Ferreira sprayed malathion on a baby crib. When state inspectors later inquired, he claimed that he used another chemical that was approved for indoor use.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Michael Hubbard, Special Agent in Charge of the Environmental Protection Agency, Criminal Investigation made the announcement today. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jonathan Mitchell and Anton Geidt and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter Kenyon.

The details contained in the indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


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