Man gets 18 months in jail for polluting

By Cao Li (China Daily)
Updated: 2006-11-21 07:14

SHANGHAI: A man was sentenced to 18 months in prison Monday for illegally dumping tons of unprocessed chemical waste.

Xiao Cangwang, 40, dumped 39 tons of electrolytic waste containing poisonous chemicals like hydrogen chloride, hydrogen fluoride and heptanone three separate times between March and June this year. He had taken the waste from two construction sites, one of them for a road.

The waste reportedly emitted a strong odour, and a passer-by who accidentally came into contact with some of the chemicals experienced a burning sensation on his skin. It cost the authorities 330,000 yuan (US$41,250) to clean up the two dump sites, according to the verdict.

By law, people found guilty of causing serious environmental pollution could face jail sentences of up to seven years. Shanghai's Jiading District People's Court handed down a lenient sentence because Xiao had admitted to dumping the hazardous waste.

On June 8, residents in Xinghuo Village, Jiading District, reported to the police that someone had left 52 buckets of foul-smelling chemical waste alongside a road being built near the village. The local environment bureau dispatched experts to the scene to test the material.

The buckets contained more than 10 tons of waste, much of it in the form of poisonous chemicals. Clean-up teams carted off much of the topsoil in the affected area.

Investigators first traced the waste to Shanghai Funuolin Fine Chemical Co Ltd in Nanhui District, and then to Xiao Cangwang, who had faked a contract on behalf of Shanghai Julang Industry and Trade Co Ltd to dispose of the waste. It soon emerged that Xiao did not actually work for Shanghai Julang.

Police arrested Xiao on June 16 when he showed up at Shanghai Funuolin Fine Chemical, asking to be paid for dumping the waste. Xiao admitted that he had faked Shanghai Julang Industry and Trade's business seal and other documents before signing the contract with Shanghai Funuolin Fine Chemical.

Xiao had also dumped more than 29 tons of unprocessed electrolytic chemical waste at a construction site in Jianhua Village in Jiading District, receiving more than 36,000 yuan (US$4,500) from the chemical manufacturer in exchange. Teams were sent to clean up the waste at the second site.

Top China News  
Today's Top News  
Most Commented/Read Stories in 48 Hours