- Michael Stine, the owner of Pennsylvania-based MS Recycling Inc., has been charged with illegally dumping construction and demolition waste by the state attorney general's office, as reported by Lehigh Valley Live.
- State investigators estimate it will cost $1.35 million to clean up more than 23,000 tons of waste that was dumped at multiple sites across four counties.
- Stine faces five felony counts of criminal mischief and nine misdemeanor counts of unlawful conduct. He is currently free on bail ahead of a preliminary hearing on Oct. 5.
Authorities first began to look into MS Recycling after one of their drivers crashed into a home near the largest dump site in Northampton County in April 2014. The state's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) started reviewing their operations at the site and eventually referred the investigation to the attorney general's office in August 2014.
Other reports of illegal dumping to the DEP helped officials piece together the full scope of Stine's illegal activities at eight different locations. Issues with importing waste from New York, operating without a permit and allowing an employee to drive after he lost his license were also part of the investigation.
This is one of many examples of officials cracking down on illegal dumping and disposal throughout the country this year. New Jersey's state legislature is working on a bill to close loopholes that allowed multiple operators with organized crime connections to dump illegal waste in the state. The owner of South Carolina-based American Waste Inc. was recently sentenced to 18 months in federal prison for illegally dumping septic waste, and others are under indictment for their own environmentally questionable practices.