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For Immediate Release
May 1, 2002
Contact: Sean Caine, 410-576-6357

CALIFORNIA MAN INDICTED FOR ASBESTOS REMOVAL VIOLATIONS AT MONTGOMERY COUNTY SCHOOL

Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that Donaldo Hugo Drachenberg, 54, of Loma Linda, California, has been indicted by a Grand Jury in Montgomery County and charged with 14 counts of asbestos removal violations. Drachenberg, who formerly lived in the 15600 block of Dorset Road in Laurel, is charged with violating Maryland’s asbestos control laws while removing friable asbestos within a school building at the Sligo Adventist School on Carroll Avenue in Takoma Park during March of 2001.

The indictment charges that Drachenberg was unlicensed and failed to notify the Maryland Department of the Environment that he was removing asbestos. Additionally, it is alleged that he failed to properly contain the work, failed to post required warning signs, failed to properly handle the removed asbestos and failed to take required precautions designed to protect the workers doing the removal work.

Each count carries a potential maximum sentence of one year in jail and a $25,000 fine upon conviction. The filing of an indictment is merely an accusation of criminal wrongdoing and each individual is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Trial has been set for September 3, 2002 in Circuit Court in Rockville.

These charges follow a joint investigation conducted by the Environmental Crimes Unit of the Office of the Attorney General and the Maryland State Police with the assistance of the Maryland Department of the Environment's Air and Radiation Management Administration.

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