NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — An operator of a ship scrapping company has been sentenced to a year in prison for federal environmental violations.
Fifty-six-year-old Steven E. Avery of Bohannon was sentenced Thursday in federal court in Norfolk.
His brother, 81-year-old Billy J. Avery of Virginia Beach, received five years' probation. Both were fined $25,000.
Their company, Sea Solutions Inc., was barred from further engaging in the ship scrapping business.
According to court documents, Sea Solutions bought the M/V Snow Bird in February 2010 and planned to scrap it. The defendants knew petroleum products and other pollutants were onboard the vessel. But they didn't remove the pollutants before beginning scrapping operations.
A major spill of oil and other pollutants occurred in the Elizabeth River in October 2010.