Criminal prosecution for environmental violations is usually applied to the most egregious and severe polluters.

Typical Environmental Violations Include

  • Intentional dumping of toxic substances without proper permits
  • Unknown leakage of toxic substances
  • Failure to maintain facilities at legal environmental levels
  • Deliberate falsification of environmental reports

When Can You be Fined or Convicted for an Environmental Violation?

  • Whenever you discharge an illegal amount of a toxic substance into the air, water, or soil, which poses a significant threat of harm to people, property or the environment
  • If the pollution or other environmental violation was done intentionally, knowingly, recklessly or negligently
  • There is a 5-year statute of limitations, which means that the government cannot prosecute you for these violations if they happened more than 5 years ago

Accused of an Environmental Violation?

If you are accused of an environmental violation, you should speak to an attorney to learn more about your rights, your defenses and the complicated legal system.

To Report an Environmental Violation

If you are aware of a person or business that is causing an environmental violation, you should contact the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA’s website is

Vea esta página en español: Violaciones al Medioambiente o visita para más información legal.