E-scrap processor charged with illegal dumping

By Jake Thomas, Resource Recycling

Authorities in Hennepin County, Minnesota have accused the head of an electronics recycling company of improperly handling hazardous waste.

The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office has charged Curtis Weston Hilleren, the general manager of Hopkins-based Electronic Salvage Industries, LLC, with a summons to appear in court over allegations that he illegally placed crushed CRT glass into a roll-off box that was to be dumped into a landfill.

In August of last year, the Hennepin County Department of Environmental Services received a complaint that Hilleren had improperly handled the lead-containing material. A follow-up visit from the department to the facility found evidence confirming that CRT glass had been illegally placed in a container bound for a landfill.

According to the complaint, Hilleren initially denied knowing who owned the box that had CRT glass in it, but eventually admitted that he “screwed up.” Hilleren estimated that the CRT waste totaled between 3,000 and 4,000 pounds, according to the complaint.

In 2009, the department found a CRT in the company’s dumpster, resulting in the company being ordered to remove the item and document how it would prevent similar mistakes in the future.

The charges against Hilleren carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison and/or a $50,000 fine.