Albert Dickson, a project manager for an asbestos removal project in Atlanta, GA, recently pled guilty to charges of knowingly making a false statement in a document required to be filed under the Clean Water Act. But Mr. Dickson also claimed the situation was a “set-up” by a disgruntled subcontractor.
Mr. Dickson was the manager in charge of asbestos removal in the former L. Mendel Rivers Federal Building in Charleston, SC. Flooding had damaged roofs and disrupted asbestos in the ceilings of the structure. Dickson told investigators that a water filtration system had been installed to prevent asbestos from contaminating the city’s water sewer system. An anonymous complaint prompted a surprise inspection of the project site, in which asbestos materials were found ripped off walls and shoved into drains leading to the sewer system, where no filtration system existed.
Mr. Dickson believes that a subcontractor, who was a day laborer with a falsified asbestos-removal license, set him up for disaster by irresponsibly handling the asbestos materials and then making the anonymous call.
Despite the conspiracy theory, he pled guilty to a charge that carries a maximum two-year prison sentence and a maximum fine of $10,000.