Greene County businessman sentenced for dumping wastewater across six counties
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A Greene County businessman who admitted to 13 of 98 charges of illegally dumping millions of gallons of wastewater across six local counties was sentenced today to seven years of probation, 1,750 hours of environement-related community service and ordered to pay $257,316 in restitution.
After an all-day sentencing hearing, Greene County Common Pleas Judge Farley Toothman also ordered Robert Allan Shipman, 50, owner of Allan's Waste Water Service, to pay a $100,000 fine and another $25,000 to the attorney general's office.
In addition, the judge ordered Mr. Shipman and his wife to show proof that they have divested themselves from Allan's Waste Water and Tri-County Waste Water Management and barred Mr. Shipman from working in the business again.
The attorney general's office, which argued for jail time, said it was "extremely disappointed" in the sentence. Sentencing guidelines called for 16 months in prison. Spokesman Nils Frederiksen said the sentence of probation "sends the wrong message" about the seriousness of environmental crimes in Pennsylvania, especially one on the scale of Mr. Shipman's.
He said Mr. Shipman's scheme went on for a long time, was carefully planned and also involved theft on a "massive" scale.
Mr. Shipman pleaded guilty earlier this year to theft by deception, receiving stolen property, tampering with public records, conspiracy and other counts related to the illegal dumping.
The attorney general's office said Mr. Shipman and his company orchestrated a scheme to dump gas drilling wastewater and sludge into streams and onto business properties in Allegheny, Fayette, Greene, Lawrence, Washington and Westmoreland counties between 2003 and 2009.
Mr. Shipman's company was hired to properly dispose of waste from gas drilling operations in addition to sludge from sewage treatment plants and grease water from restaurants.
Instead, the AG said, he instructed his drivers to dump the waste illegally.
First Published June 15, 2012 6:59 pm