Feds charge D&L Energy owner with violating the U.S. Clean Water Act

U.S. Attorney Steven Dettelbach announced in Youngstown yesterday that Ben Lupo, the owner of D&L Energy who admitted to ordering employees at his other company, Hardrock Excavating, to illegally discharge as much as 240,000 gallons of oilfield wastewater into a tributary of the Mahoning River over a five-month period, has been charged with violating the U.S. Clean Water Act, The Business Journal reports (See the Feb 12, 2013, blog – “D&L Energy Group owner admits to illegally dumping potentially 240,000 gallons of drilling wastewater since September; may appeal ODNR’s revocation of his companies’ permits”). Officials indicated that in addition to Lupo, “the drilling companies that develop the wells and transport excess wastewater from their drilling sites could also be held culpable.” Punishment for this federal offense includes a $250,000 fine and a maximum of three years in jail. After pleading not guilty during his arraignment in U.S. District Court yesterday, Lupo was released on a $50,000 bond. Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine also announced that the state is preparing a civil case against Lupo. For more, read the full story.

National, Ohio