PITTSBURGH A barge scrapper who has already served a prison sentence for allowing thousands of gallons of oil to leak into the Columbia River in Washington is being sued by the United States to recover removal costs and other expenses related to the spill.
U.S. attorneys have sued Principle Recovery Systems LLC in U.S. District Court in Washington, also naming as defendants Bret Simpson, Ron Reimer, Paul Mower and Tony Kim.
Simpson, owner of Ellensburg, Wash.-based Principle Metals, served time in prison after pleading guilty to allowing thousands of gallons of oil to leak into the Columbia River during the scrapping of a barge, resulting in a $22-million cleanup effort (amm.com, March 20).
The state has already fined Simpson $405,000 over the oil spill (amm.com, Jan. 29, 2013). The government is now suing the company and all of its original investors for the damages paid by the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund.