Federal Environmental Crimes
New Jersey federal criminal defense lawyers
Environmental crimes can seriously affect the health of communities impacted by illegal activity. But environmental laws are complex and the reputations of individuals and corporations can be put at risk. At Arseneault & Fassett, LLP, our criminal defense lawyers have the reputation and expertise to handle difficult cases. Contact us for legal representation.
Many willful violations of the several statutes administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are prosecuted as environmental crimes. Congress granted the EPA criminal law enforcement authority in 1988. Under such authority, jail sentences can be imposed. The EPA can now levy criminal sanctions against individuals and companies that violate any of the environmental laws passed by Congress, including:
- Clean Air Act
- Clean Water Act
- Toxic Substances Control Act
- Resource Conservation and Recovery Act
- Endangered Species Act
- Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act
The EPA also administers several lesser-known laws. Environmental crimes are as diverse as the many federal environmental statutes:
- Improperly disposing of hazardous waste
- Poaching or exporting endangered species
- Dumping refuse in the ocean or other bodies of water
- Discharging hazardous substances into lakes, rivers, or storm drains
- Bypassing required water treatment procedures
- Discharging harmful substances into the air
Criminal sanctions possible
While many environmental violations usually subject the individual or corporation responsible to fines and other civil liability, certain willful or negligent violations can carry criminal sanctions, including prison sentences. For example, the Clean Water Act provides for up to three years in prison for anyone who willfully discharges harmful quantities of oil into certain U.S. Waters. The CWA also provides that any person who knowingly falsifies a required report can be imprisoned for up to two years. Additionally, other federal statutes prohibiting conspiracy and falsification of reports to the federal government also apply to environmental violations.
Federal environmental crimes are very complex and require a lawyer with special knowledge. This type of case is vastly different from the cases handled by the average federal criminal defense lawyer in New Jersey, and it often requires large amounts of highly technical or scientific evidence. Therefore, if the EPA is investigating you or your business for environmental crimes, consult a New Jersey federal criminal defense lawyer at Arseneault & Fassett, LLP immediately.
Our white-collar crime lawyers in New Jersey have experience in the complex and ever-evolving area of environmental crimes. Our firm works with well-qualified and respected scientific experts and investigators who can provide the highly technical evidence that is often necessary in environmental cases. We understand the harm that environmental charges can have on your reputation and the reputation of your business. That is why our criminal defense lawyers not only build strong defenses for our clients, but also aggressively defend their reputations.
Contact Arseneault & Fassett, LLP
The law firm of Arseneault & Fassett, LLP in Chatham, New Jersey has defended numerous clients in the New York tri-state area against complex environmental charges. Call our office at 973-635-3366 or contact us online today for a free consultation.