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Missouri man pleads guilty to polluting Big Piney River

August 28, 2018

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A southwest Missouri man who had employees dump grease from his grease-recycling business into a river has admitted violating the Clean Water Act.

Federal prosecutors say 51-year-old Brian Dale Fleming, of Cabool, pleaded guilty Tuesday to knowingly discharging a pollutant into the Big Piney River without a permit.

Fleming owns BF Byproducts in Cabool. It collects used grease from hundreds of restaurants in Missouri, Arkansas and elsewhere. The grease is recycled for resale at the Cabool plant.

Prosecutors say Fleming directed employees to pump waste grease down a hill near the processing plant, where it entered a tributary that flows into the Big Piney.

Federal and local authorities searched the business in April 2015 after numerous residents complained about grease being found in ditches and tributaries near the river.

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