Owner of factory responsible for toxic green ooze sent to prison

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Green liquid oozing from retaining wall along I-696. - Michigan Department of Transportation
Michigan Department of Transportation
Green liquid oozing from retaining wall along I-696.

The owner of a now-shuttered factory that was so contaminated that it sent a hazardous, bright green ooze onto I-696 in Madison Heights reported to federal prison on Friday.

Gary Alfred Sayers, 70, was sent to FCI Morgantown, a minimum security detention center in West Virginia, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons. He is scheduled to be released on Nov. 9.

In November, Sayers was sentenced to a year in prison on a charge of illegally storing hazardous materials at Electro-Plating Services in Madison Heights.

Some of the hazardous materials were stored in a dirt hole in the basement, where the chemicals seeped into the ground and eventually found a path onto the freeway.

The green slime was groundwater contaminated with cancer-causing hexavalent chromium, which was featured on the movie Erin Brockovich.

The EPA spent about $2 million and nearly a year to clean up the waste, but officials now acknowledge they underestimated how much toxic waste ended up in the ground.

Environmental officials, who insist there is no immediate danger to the public, now say they need to demolish the building to fully clean up the contamination.

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About The Author

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling is an award-winning investigative journalist who operated Motor City Muckraker, an online news site devoted to exposing abuses of power and holding public officials accountable. Neavling also hosted Muckraker Report on 910AM from September 2017 to July 2018. Before launching Motor City Muckraker,...
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