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MINNESOTA MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO CLEAN WATER ACT VIOLATION

Release Date: 12/08/2000
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FOR RELEASE: FRIDAY, DEC. 8, 2000
MINNESOTA MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO CLEAN WATER ACT VIOLATION


Scott Sanness of Spring Grove, Minn., pleaded guilty on Dec. 1, in U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota in St. Paul to violating the Clean Water Act. Sanness, who operates an animal feeding operation in Houston County, dumped approximately 150,000 gallons of manure/water mixture into the Duck Creek and Waterloo Creek. He did not have a permit from EPA or from the state of Minnesota for the release. The introduction of animal wastes into surface waters without a permit can lead to high concentrations of fecal coliform bacteria and pathogens which can harm fish and wildlife that depend upon the river and make the waters unsuitable for drinking and recreational use by people due to the risk of infection. Approximately 1,600 fish were killed in both creeks as a result of this release. When sentenced, Sanness faces a maximum sentence of up to three years in prison and/or a fine of up to $50,000 per day of violation. The case was investigated by EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division and is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in St. Paul.

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