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Techsol President Pleads Guilty in Chemical Spill Case

Tue, 07/20/2010 - 6:14am

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) — A Huntington man has pleaded guilty to negligently releasing a hazardous pollutant into the city's sewer system.

Fifty-nine-year-old James R. Holt faces up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine when he is sentenced Oct. 18 in federal court in Huntington.

Holt was president of Techsol Chemical Co. In October 2004, employees of Techsol were trying to transfer coal tar light oil from a tanker car into a truck to be driven to Marathon Oil in Kentucky. About 22,000 gallons of the oil spilled. Nearby homes and schools were evacuated, some for up to a week.

Federal prosecutors say the cleanup cost Marathon more than $8.3 million.

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