Company Defrauds Asbestos Customers, Puts Them at Risk
A so-called environmental consulting company in Albany, New York has been removing asbestos for the last four years without a license, defrauding customers who thought they were indeed licensed and putting these same individuals at risk for asbestos exposure due to improper abatement.
Albany Environmental Consultants LLC, owner Ronda M. Dolan, 51, of Earlton, and project manager Brian K. McLaren, 54, of Troy pled guilty earlier this week to accepting asbestos abatement projects and carrying them out despite the fact that their asbestos remediation license had expired in 2014 and was never renewed.
That means workers never received the proper training as to how to safely remove the toxic material.
“After the license expired, and knowing they could not obtain asbestos-related jobs without a license, the defendants forged their letterhead by using the license number of a legitimately licensed company, the Attorney General’s Office said. They operated the unlicensed company through at least January 2015 and took on at least 19 jobs — including at personal residences, a manufacturing facility, a firehouse, a church, a bus station and a hospital — throughout Albany, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Washington, Montgomery and Westchester counties,” explains an article in The Daily Freeman.
The defendants initially were charged with one felony count of identity theft, six felony counts of grand larceny and one felony count of scheme to defraud, the Attorney General’s Office reported in a press release.
Both admitted to their wrongdoings.
Because of the company’s disregard for the law, customers not only were required to have their work redone by a licensed abatement company, but they now must worry about the fact that they were potentially exposed to asbestos during these removal procedures, which were handled incorrectly.
There is a chance that unknowing employees of the company were also exposed.
There are very specific laws regarding the removal of asbestos, which is why it is suggested that an individual NEVER try to remove asbestos materials as part of a DIY project.
Asbestos materials must be wet before removal, areas where abatement is being done must be properly sealed off, and air quality must be monitored. Whenever shortcuts are taken, the health of those nearby is put at risk.
Abatement can be an expensive proposition but being sure that removal is done correctly will result in peace of mind and the knowledge that no corners were cut and no exposure occurred.