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Press Release

California Woman and Company Charged with Clean Air Act Violation

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Louisiana

U.S. Attorney Kenneth A. Polite announced that CHEERY WAY, INC., and ELAINE CHIU, age 60, a resident of San Francisco, California, were charged today in a one-count Bill of Information with a felony violation of the Clean Air Act.

According to the Bill of Information, on or about April 2, 2011, in the Eastern District of Louisiana, CHEERY WAY, INC., and CHIU did knowingly fail to notify and report to the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality the demolition of the Mississippi Queen Riverboat, a facility, which contained regulated asbestos containing material, to wit: wall and ceiling tiles, at least ten days prior to the start of the demolition as required by the Clean Air Act, in violation of Title 42, United States Code, Section 7413(c)(2)(B) and Title 40, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 61.145(b). 

If convicted, CHEERY WAY, INC., faces a maximum term of probation of five years and a fine of $500,000.  If convicted, CHIU, faces a maximum term of imprisonment of two years, a maximum fine of $250,000, a maximum term of supervised release of one year, and a mandatory $100 special assessment.

U.S. Attorney Polite reiterated that the Bill of Information is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

U.S. Attorney Polite praised the work of the Environmental Protection Agency-Criminal Investigation Division and the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality-Criminal Investigation Division in investigating this matter.   Assistant United States Attorney Emily K. Greenfield is in charge of the prosecution.

Updated December 4, 2015