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MISSISSIPPI WASTE PROCESSOR PLEADS GUILTY TO WATER VIOLATIONS

Release Date: 11/09/2000
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FOR RELEASE: THURSDAY, NOV. 9, 2000
MISSISSIPPI WASTE PROCESSOR PLEADS
GUILTY TO WATER VIOLATIONS

Central Industries, Inc., which operates a poultry waste processing plant in Scott County, Miss., pleaded guilty on Nov. 2 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi to 26 counts of violating the Clean Water Act. At the hearing, Central was sentenced to pay a $13 million fine and pay $1 million in restitution to the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality. Central was also placed on five years probation. Central Industries accepts waste animal parts from five poultry slaughterhouses in Mississippi and renders the wastes into animal feed and other useful products. In its plea, Central admitted that it discharged higher than permitted levels of polluted wastewater from its rendering plant into Tallabogue Creek, a tributary of the Pearl River. Higher than permitted levels of organic wastes can reduce oxygen in rivers and streams and thereby harm fish and aquatic life. The case was investigated by EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division, the FBI and the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality and is being jointly prosecuted by the Environmental Crimes Section of the U.S. Department of Justice and by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Mississippi.

R-171 ###