Friday, July 1, 2011

United States v. Mancuso

Jun 30: In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, Case No. 10-2420. In this unpublished order appealed from judgments of the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York. The case involves sentencing of two brother who among other convictions, violated the Clean Air Act (CAA) and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) in the conduct of asbestos removal.
    The Appeals Court ruled on many issues that were appealed and said, "Upon due consideration, it is hereby ordered, adjudged, and decreed that the judgments of conviction entered as to defendant Steven Mancuso on June 14, 2010; and as to Paul Mancuso on June 14, 2010, and January 10, 2011, are affirmed in part and vacated in part, and the cases are remanded for resentencing consistent with this order. Steven and Paul Mancuso stand convicted by a jury on a common count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, see 18 U.S.C. § 371; to commit mail fraud, see id. § 1341; to violate the Clean Air Act (CAA), see 42 U.S.C. §§ 7412, 7413(c); and to violate the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), see id. § 9603. Paul Mancuso was further convicted of six substantive CAA and CERCLA counts. See 42 U.S.C. §§ 7413(c), 9603(a)-(b). Steven Mancuso, who was sentenced to 44 months in prison."
    Both defendants fault the district court for applying a four-level enhancement for permitless disposal of a hazardous substance based on a Clean Water Act permit violation. The Appeals Court said regarding the environmental issues, "Although neither defendant objected to the enhancement below, we are here obliged to identify plain error. Our precedent prohibits application of § 2Q1.2(b)(4) when the environmental offense at issue 'did not 'involve' a permit violation,' even if the conduct contravened a different
statute's permit requirements. United States v. Rubenstein, 403 F.3d at 100-01 (vacating enhancement based on state permit violation when defendant convicted of CAA offense because CAA does not require permit). Thus, the district court here plainly erred by applying the enhancement based solely on a Clean Water Act permit violation because the relevant CAA and CERCLA offenses did not involve permits. . ."
    Access the complete order with more details (click here). [*Air, *Remed, *Toxics, CA2]
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