Sinclair Tulsa Refining Company to Pay $5 Million, Managers Sentenced for Environmental Crimes
Sinclair Tulsa Refining Company was fined $5 million and two company managers were sentenced on April 4 for environmental crimes related to the operation of the company’s Tulsa refinery. Sinclair and the two managers, John Kapura and Harmon Connell, admitted to knowingly manipulating the refinery processes, wastewater flows, and wastewater discharges for mandatory testing required by law. The manipulated samplings were intended to influence results reported to the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Under the Clean Water Act, industries must limit the amount of pollutants discharged into rivers, lakes, streams or other water bodies.
Sinclair was ordered to pay a $5 million criminal penalty, to make a community service payment of $500,000 to the Arkansas River Parks Authority and to be on probation for two years. Connell and Kapura were each sentenced to serve six months of home detention and three years of probation. In addition, Connell was ordered to pay a $160,000 fine and to serve 100 hours of community service; Kapura was ordered to pay an $80,000 fine and to serve 50 hours of community service.
EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division and the Oklahoma Attorney General’s Environmental Protection Unit investigated the case. The Department of Justice and the Northern District of Oklahoma United States Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case.
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