- California’s CalRecycle is charging that 12 companies owe the state's container deposit program a total of $14 million, according to Resource Recycling. Waste Management subsidiary Sacramento Recycling & Transfer Station accounts for almost $4 million of it due to fraudulent claims made in 2013 and 2014 tied to processing payments for out-of-state containers, and mislabeling PET and HDPE containers as aluminum.
- American Metals Market reported the accusations last week, confirmed by CalRecycle spokesperson Mark Oldfield who said each case remains unresolved.
- In addition to Waste Management’s subsidiary, the accused are American Green Recycling, Dougherty's Recycling, Eagle Recycling, Enviro Recycling, J&S Recycling, Jayden's Recycling, Junior Recycling, Mejia's Recycling, PNL Recycling, USA Recycling and Valero Recycling.
Exactly this time last year, CalRecycle announced five Californians were being indicted on grand theft and recycling fraud charges, part of a scheme involving 24 Southern California recycling centers. It was not the first or last fraud charge for the year. And already this year there have been more, with the last California recycling fraud-related arrest made in April.
In this latest case, the fate of all parties involved has yet to be determined. Sacramento Recycling & Transfer Station has been slapped lightly, assigned a five-year probation period whereby the operation simply incurs "a lower threshold for CalRecycle taking disciplinary action," Oldfield stated, as reported in Resource Recycling.
But the indictments and a dedicated Department of Justice team do send a message that California is on the lookout, and there will be consequences for trying to cheat the system.