March 2006

Illegal dumping in New Orleans brings arrests

Baton Rouge, LA— The Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality arrested Cecil and McKinley Person for violating several environmental laws centered around an unauthorized dump site on Old Gentilly Road in New Orleans. Cecil was arrested on a charge for criminal damage to property in excess of $50,000, illegal disposal of a substance and criminal conspiracy. McKinley was charged with criminal damage to property in excess of $50,000 and criminal conspiracy.

DEQ investigators determined the Persons were charging people hauling waste tipping fees that are slightly lower than two nearby permitted landfills. However, the Persons’ site had no controls over what types of wastes were being dumped. The Persons did not have the permits necessary to operate a landfill.

The Persons began the waste operation without the permission of the landowners and continued to operate even after being ordered to cease the dumping by the owners and state officials.

Before Hurricane Katrina the site was 200-feet wide by 800-feet long with waste at least five-feet deep. Since the hurricane, the site has grown.

The majority of waste going into the site was construction and demolition debris. Investigators also documented multiple portable fuel tanks, aerosol cans, waste tires and vehicles. The site has recently received hurricane waste as well.


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