June 10, 2020
Two California Companies Plead Guilty to Violations of the Clean Water Act
On June 10, 2020, United Pumping Service, Inc. and United Storm Water, Inc. pleaded guilty to violations of the Clean Water Act in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
On June 2, 2020, United Pumping Services, Inc. and United Storm Water, Inc. were charged in a superseding information to which both pleaded guilty on June 10. The superseding information stated that between May 11 and May 15, 2015, United Pumping Services, Inc. and United Storm Water Inc. aided and abetted each other to transport and deliver six separate loads of industrial wastewater to another company’s facility. The receiving company then discharged the industrial wastewater, which contained arsenic, to a municipal treatment plant in Los Angeles County. United Pumping Services, Inc. and United Storm Water, Inc. did not disclose the arsenic concentration in the wastewater, which caused the receiving company to violate its discharge permit with Los Angeles County when it unknowingly discharged the arsenic-laden water without first pre-treating it. Consequently, United Pumping Service, Inc. and United Storm Water, Inc. negligently caused a violation of the pre-treatment program under the Clean Water Act.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with the Environmental Protection Agency Criminal Investigation Division.