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Ohio man suspected of illegally dumping drilling waste

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By The Associated Press
Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013, 8:24 p.m.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — A northeast Ohio man charged with violating the federal Clean Water Act is suspected of having an employee repeatedly dump gas-drilling wastewater into a storm sewer, federal prosecutors said on Thursday.

Hardrock Excavating LLC owner Ben Lupo, of Poland, Ohio, appeared in court and pleaded not guilty, U.S. Attorney Steven Dettelbach said.

Lupo, 62, faces up to three years in prison, a $250,000 fine and a year of supervised release if convicted.

Authorities allege Lupo repeatedly directed that unknown amounts of drilling mud and brine be discharged into a sewer that empties into the Mahoning River watershed.

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