25 punished for illegal disposal of chemicals in China

Beijing, Feb 22 (IANS) At least 25 people have been punished after they were implicated in the illegal disposal of hazardous chemicals which killed four persons in east China’s Shangdong province, the Ministry of Environmental Protection announced on Monday.

On October 21, 2015, Zhang Linde and Chen Jixin hired a tanker to transport liquid chemical waste to an abandoned coal mine in a village in Zhangqiu city, which they had leased to illegally store the dangerous chemicals, Xinhua cited the ministry’s report as saying.

Zhang, Chen, the tanker driver and the supercargo (person employed on a transport by the owner of the cargo) died from poisoning as a result of dumping the chemicals.

According to the provincial environmental protection and public security agencies, five local companies had been engaged in the illegal transfer of hazardous chemicals with Zhang and Chen.

As many as 25 suspects have been dealt with according to criminal procedures while several others are at large, the report said.

Shangdong Environmental Protection Bureau has issued production suspensions to the five companies.

As of January 21, the polluted area had been fully enclosed in curtain grouting, the ministry said. The local environment agency will now decontaminate the mine.

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