Jail term in Ontario PCB case, while northern gold mine pleads guilty

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Lupin Mine
Nunavut-based Lupin Mines Inc. is facing a $100,000 fine after pleading guilty to filing reports three years late about the potential impact of the defunct gold mine on nearby fish habitat. Photo Credit: Wikimedia/LCGS Russ

The director of Ontario-based Collingwood Prime Realty Holdings Corp., Issa El-Hinn, has been sentenced to a 45-day jail term for PCB violations under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. 

Collingwood Prime Realty Holdings Corp. owns what used to be a Goodyear hose manufacturing facility that closed its doors in 2007.

El-Hinn pleaded guilty to the unused property having two electrical transformers and eight electrical capacitors that contained illegal levels of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). The equipment had also not been sent for destruction to an authorized facility, Environment and Climate Change Canada enforcement officers noted in a report.

The equipment has since been removed with no leaks discovered.

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The enforcement officers responded on April 30, 2015, to investigate the company’s failure to comply with an environmental protection compliance order for the equipment’s removal.

El-Hinn and the corporation pleaded guilty on September 26, 2017, to 10 counts of contravening PCB Regulations, and one count of failing to comply with an environmental protection compliance order.

The Ontario Court of Justice also sentenced the corporation and Mr. El-Hinn to pay a combined penalty of $420,000 to be directed to the federal Environmental Damages Fund.

While jail time is rare for an environmental offence, the term will be fulfilled on weekends over the course of more than five months.

As a result of the conviction, the company’s name will be added to the Environmental Offenders Registry.

Lupin Gold Mine 

Nunavut-based Lupin Mines Inc. is facing a $100,000 fine after pleading guilty to filing reports three years late about the potential impact of the defunct gold mine on nearby fish habitat.

While the mine opened in 1982, it has been closed since 2004.

The previous owners of the property had suggested that the mine is in care and maintenance mode due to the low price of gold. The mine, mill and processing plant have since been purchased by WPC Resources Inc. in Vancouver.

To date, more than 3.4 million ounces of gold have been mined and recovered from Lupin.

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