If you have seen the movie "Christmas Vacation," you know the scene where Cousin Eddie empties sewage from his RV into a storm drain. Officials say a man from New York did something similar to that and now he has been indicted.

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Acting Attorney General Matthew Platkin says 55-year-old Anthony Serpe of Greenwood Lake, NY, was indicted on charges of third-degree violation of New Jersey’s Water Pollution Control Act and fourth-degree illegal collection of solid waste last week.

According to Platkin, Serpe illegally collected somewhere between 250 and 1000 gallons of wastewater and solid sewage waste from a residential septic system and then discharged it into a storm drain that emptied into West Milford Lake in West Milford, NJ, in March 2021.

Platkin said in a statement,

Illegally discharging waste into waterways harms our environment and poses a serious threat to public health in New Jersey. We will vigorously enforce the laws in place to protect our natural resources and hold polluters responsible for the environmental damage that they cause.

If convicted, Serpe faces three to five years in prison for violating the water pollution control act and up to 18 months for the illegal collection of solid waste charge, plus potentially thousands of dollars in fines.

The public is reminded that charges are accusations and all persons are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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