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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Village Of Westfield Employee Sentenced For Illegally Dumping Sewage Into Chautauqua Creek

CONTACT:      Barbara Burns
PHONE:         (716) 843-5817
FAX:            (716) 551-3051

BUFFALO, N.Y.-U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced today that Andrew Thompson, 34, of Westfield, NY, who was convicted of violation of the Clean Water Act, was sentenced to six months probation and a $10,000 fine by U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeremiah J. McCarthy.

“The very purpose of the Clean Water Act is to protect our most precious natural resource,” said U.S. Attorney Hochul. “This Office will not tolerate any individual -- in particular a public servant who should know better -- deliberately poisoning our nation’s waterways.” 

Assistant U.S. Attorney, Aaron J. Mango, who handled the case, stated that the defendant was the Chief Operator of the Waste Water Treatment Plant for the Village of Westfield, N.Y. On June 12, 2014, a malfunction occurred at the West Side Pump Station located in the Village. The pump station was unable to pump the untreated sewage flowing through the station, which resulted in untreated sewage being discharged into Chautauqua Creek. Based on an alarm that was triggered due to the sewage overflow, Thompson was aware of the discharge of sewage into the creek.

The following day on June 13, 2014, as workers were attempting to fix the pump station, the defendant directed them to discharge the untreated sewage pumped out of the pump station into Chautauqua Creek. Thompson did not have a permit issued under the Clean Water Act for the discharge of the untreated sewage, a pollutant, into the creek and acted negligently in allowing the untreated sewage to be discharged in such a manner.
 
The sentencing is the result of an investigation by agents of the Environmental Protection Agency, under the direction of Vernesa Jones-Allen, Special Agent-In-Charge and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation under the direction of Captain Frank Lauricella.

Updated August 17, 2016