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NEW YORK EXECUTIVE AND COMPANY SENTENCED FOR ILLEGAL ASBESTOS REMOVAL

Release Date: 11/18/99
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FOR RELEASE: THURSDAY, NOV. 18, 1999

NEW YORK EXECUTIVE AND COMPANY SENTENCED FOR ILLEGAL ASBESTOS REMOVAL

Salvatore Napolitano of Brooklyn, N.Y., was sentenced on Nov. 9, by the U.S. District Court in New Haven, Conn., to serve 15 months in prison, pay $19, 034 in fines and restitution and serve three years of supervised release after completing his jail term. The defendant’s company, ECCO Construction Inc., was sentenced to five years probation and prohibited from working in construction projects involving asbestos. The defendants had pleaded guilty to conspiring to violate the Clean Air Act in connection with the illegal removal of asbestos-containing material during the conversion of a former Y.M.C.A. building in New Haven into an upscale apartment development in 1997. As a result of the conspiracy, untrained and undocumented workers from Mexico were used to remove asbestos from boilers, piping and floor coverings at the building. The workers were locked in the building and were not provided with equipment to protect them from inhaling asbestos fibers. As a result of this crime, asbestos fibers were released into the air at the construction site where workers and others could inhale them. Inhalation of asbestos fibers can cause lung cancer, a lung disease known as “asbestosis,” and mesothelioma which is a cancer of the chest and abdominal cavities. Asbestos filled garbage bags were also illegally disposed of in various locations around New Haven. The case was investigated by EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division and the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection, and was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut.



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