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Judge To Resentence Texas Gas Company

Tue, 11/05/2013 - 12:29pm
Associated Press

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A federal judge in Rhode Island is set to resentence a Texas gas company for an environmental crime, after he asked the environmental community for ideas for a punishment when his original $18 million penalty was struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court.

U.S. District Judge William Smith has said he is limited to a sentence equivalent to $500,000 when he sentences Southern Union Co. on Tuesday.

That's significantly less than the original $6 million fine and $12 million in charitable contributions he imposed for its conviction for improperly storing mercury.

Environmental groups suggested the company be ordered to pay for mercury studies, a program to reduce food waste and other projects.

Federal prosecutors have urged a fine of $100,000 and a $400,000 community service payment to a public body.

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