State Grand Jury Returns First Indictments on Environmental Charges

(COLUMBIA, S.C.)   South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson announced the State Grand Jury today returned indictments against George W. Smolen of Anderson.  He was charged with one (1) count of Violation of the Hazardous Waste Management Act and one (1) count of Violation of the Pollution Control Act.

This is the first time the State Grand Jury has returned indictments on environmental charges.

Both charges are misdemeanors.  The Violation of the Hazardous Waste Management Act offense is punishable by one (1) year in prison and a fine of up to $25,000 for each day of violation.  The Violation of the Pollution Control Act offense is punishable up to two (2) years in prison and a fine of $500 to $25,000 for each day of violation.

The indictment alleges that Smolen, while owning and operating a company called Flex-A-Form, improperly stored and dumped large amounts of hazardous waste into the environment of Anderson County, and that these acts caused environmental damage of more than $2,000,000, which is the statutory  threshold for consideration by the State Grand Jury.

The case will be prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Ashley A. McMahan.  It was investigated by agents from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control’s Office of Criminal Investigations.

Attorney General Wilson stressed all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they are proven guilty in a court of law.

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