After a four year investigation into questionable disposal practices by New Energy Fuels, LLC, the U.S. Attorney’s Office has filed charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States and transporting hazardous waste without required safety placards against the company.
Potential Health Threat From Hazardous Waste Dumping
In 2011, Lonnie Perkins of New Energy Fuels, was arrested by the Houston police department and Harris County Constables Environmental Crimes Unit after he was caught dumping an oily acidic waste into a city storm drain. Later tests showed that the dumped waste was acidic enough to pose a health threat to humans and animals, causing severe burns. They were then ordered by courts to cease all activities.
Allegations of Fraudulent Conduct
Prior to the investigation, New Energy Fuels was believed to have processed waste products like animal fat and vegetable oil into biodiesel fuel.
Further investigation revealed at least 13 dumping sites in the Houston area.
The charges of conspiracy come after New Energy Fuels allegedly received millions of dollars in credits under EPA’s Renewal Identification Numbers program. Further investigation revealed that New Energy Fuels also transported hazardous waste without the correct safety placards.