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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Nebraska

Monday, October 1, 2018

Omaha Man Sentenced For Failing To Comply With Federal Lead-Based Paint Disclosure Requirements

United States Attorney Joe Kelly announced today that on October 1, 2018, United States Magistrate Judge Susan M. Bazis fined Gerald Wojtalewicz, age 68 of Omaha, Nebraska, $7,500 following his misdemeanor conviction for failing to comply with federal lead-based paint disclosure requirements under the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992. 

An investigation conducted by the EPA Criminal Investigation Division determined that between November 2012 and December 2015 Wojtalewicz owned and leased an Omaha residence that contained lead-based paint.  Wojtalewicz was responsible for ensuring compliance with the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992.  Investigators determined Wojtalewicz failed to provide his tenant with lead-based paint warnings and related disclosures required under that Act.

Along with other Federal agencies, the EPA is a participant in the Federal Lead Strategy, an initiative by the Presidential Task Force on Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks to Children.  EPA pursues both civil and criminal enforcement of lead-based paint violations, to deter noncompliance and promote a level playing-field among regulated businesses and landlords.

“If tenants are to make sound choices concerning their place of residence, it is essential they have sound information,” said Special Agent in Charge Jeff Martinez of EPA’s criminal enforcement program in Nebraska.  “Landlords and owners who fail to notify prospective tenants about the hazards of lead poisoning put those tenants at serious risk.”

 EPA has also launched a Campaign on Lead, a multi-pronged approach aimed at eliminating childhood exposure to lead in water, soil, air and other sources, as well as in paint.

Updated October 3, 2018