Man indicted for allegedly polluting San Francisco Bay wetlands

A Bay Area man has been charged with polluting wetlands in the San Francisco Bay with construction material he was hired to dispose of, federal prosecutors announced.

In a federal indictment unsealed Monday, James Philip Lucero, 59, was accused of violating federal environmental laws by allegedly dumping construction debris and other material into waters next to the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge in Newark.

Authorities say Lucero, a Carmel resident, described himself as a “dirt broker” who charged contractors and trucking companies to provide them open space to dump fill material between June and September 2014. But that open space, the indictment alleges, ran over into federally protected lands and Lucero didn’t have a permit to use it.

The material Lucero had dumped was discharged into nearly 13 acres of wetlands and other waters, officials claim. He faces up to three years in prison and a $50,000 fine if convicted.


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Lucero is scheduled to make an initial court appearance April 25.

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