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Sentencing in Rocky River cyanide fish kill

Sentencing in Rocky River cyanide fish kill

(Cleveland) - A Strongsville company and the company owner’s wife were ordered to pay more than $330,000 Thursday for their roles in the dumping of a drum of liquid cyanide into a storm drain that flowed into the Rocky River. It resulted in the death of more than 30,000 fish.

Kennedy Mint, Inc. was ordered to make a community service payment of $300,000 to the Cleveland Metroparks. The company previously pleaded guilty to violating of the Clean Water Act.

Teresina Montorsi, 74, was sentenced to one year of probation and ordered to pay a fine of $5,000. She previously pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice.

“Clean, fresh water is Ohio’s greatest natural resource,” said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. “We are satisfied that we were able to determine who put the cyanide into the river and killed tens of thousands of fish. The restitution from this case will be used to restock the river with fish, so that people can again enjoy the natural beauty of the Rocky River.”

“We are pleased that the river will be restocked with fish,” Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said. “This case demonstrates the devastating consequences that a single dumping can have on the environment. We will continue to work with our Task Force partners to investigate and prosecute violations of environmental protection laws and those who attempt to cover up such violations.”

Company owner Renato Montorsi was indicted last year, but those charges were dismissed after he was found to be incompetent to stand trial.

Renato and Teresina Montorsi are married and live in Grafton, Ohio, according to public records.

Kennedy Mint will also pay restitution of $30,893 -- $1 for every fish killed by the illegal discharge. The money will be paid to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and used to restock the river with steelhead trout under the terms of the plea agreement.

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