Officials announced today that Chief U.S. District Judge Ralph E. Tyson sentenced Chemical and Metal Industries Inc. (C&MI), a company based in Colorado, to two years
probation, a $1,000,000 fine, and $2,000,000 in restitution to the victim’s estate, including his three children. The sentence stems from C&MI’s conviction for negligently causing the release of hazardous air pollutants and thereby negligently placing another person in imminent danger of death, in violation of the federal Clean Air Act.
The joint investigation was conducted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Criminal Enforcement, and the Louisiana State Police.
On July 29, 2003, Delvin Henry, an employee of the Honeywell’s Baton Rouge Plant, opened a one-ton cylinder, containing approximately 1800 pounds of spent antimony pentachloride, a highly toxic and corrosive hazardous material, which was violently released striking Henry. C&MI had labeled the cylinder as containing relatively benign
refrigerant while it was at their Colorado facility. Henry died the following day from his injuries.
Honeywell accepted responsibility for its role in the incident in 2008, pleading guilty to negligent endangerment under the Clean Air Act, and was sentenced to pay a criminal fine of $8,000,000, restitution of $2,000,000 to Henry’s three children, community restitution of $750,000 to the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, community restitution valued at $750,000 to the Louisiana State Police Hazardous Materials Unit, and community restitution valued at $500,000 to the Louisiana State Police Emergency Operations Center. This is the largest criminal monetary penalty
in the history of Middle District of Louisiana.
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