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DEC: Business owner faces charges after dumping hazardous waste on farms
WHITESBORO, N.Y. (WKTV) - A Whitesboro business owner is facing charges after a two-year investigation by the DEC into the improper handling and dumping of lead-laced garnet.
According to the DEC, William Zomro, 52, of Barneveld, and owner of Adirondack Precision Powders in Whitesboro, has been indicted by an Oneida County grand jury on two felony charges - unlawful possession of hazardous waste and unlawful dealing in hazardous wastes.
The DEC's Bureau of Environmental Crimes Investigation and investigators with the Oneida County Sheriff's Department arrested Zomro on January 20, and he was arraigned before an Oneida County Judge before being released on his own recognizance.
According to the DEC, Zomro's waste garnet recycling business - Adirondack Precision Powders - failed, and Zomro left behind roughly 200,000 pounds of spent garnet - a quantity of which contained high levels of lead - making it a hazardous waste.
When the DEC ordered Zomro to dispose of the material properly, Zomro instead illegally unloaded some of the garnet at farms located in Deerfield and Richfield Springs, according to investigators.
Zomro then attempted to deceive the state by claiming he had sold the business and was no longer responsible for the waste left on the site.
The DEC said investigators later realized that Zomro still owned the company, but just changed its name.
The waste was eventually cleaned up at the Whitesboro site as well as at the farms, the DEC said, but at a cost of more than $50,000.
If Zomro is convicted of these charges, he could face prison time, as well as fines of more than $375,000.
Zomro is set to appear in Oneida County Court on January 27.