AG wins felony convictions over illegal dump, wrecking yard in Renton

A King County Superior Court judge today found a Renton man guilty of multiple felony charges from his illegal dump and wrecking yard, in a case brought by Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s Counsel for Environmental Protection.

Piles of household, industrial and construction waste are spread and buried over a large portion of Charles Pillon’s 10-acre property, in some places five stories high.

The waste includes dozens of wrecked vehicles — including fire trucks, buses and boats — hundreds of tires, and unmarked chemical containers as large as 55 gallons each.

Pillon was convicted of one felony count of Violation of the Hazardous Waste Management Act, one felony count of Wrecking Vehicles Without a License and one gross misdemeanor count of Unlawful Dumping of Solid Waste. Ferguson filed the case in September 2016.

Contaminated runoff from site flows into Lake Washington

“Mr. Pillon’s illegal activity put hazardous materials in the water around his property,” Ferguson said. “These materials are bad for the environment, and unhealthy for people. I will continue to hold accountable those who harm our environment and put Washingtonians at risk.”

Water and soil samples at the site included multiple dangerous and hazardous wastes at levels exceeding ground or surface water quality standards, such as lead, chromium, cadmium and arsenic.

Surface water on the site runs into drains that lead to May Creek and ultimately Lake Washington.

Pillon’s sentencing is set for June 15. The cost to clean up Pillon’s property has not yet been assessed.

The Attorney General’s Office prosecuted the case following a referral from the King County Prosecutor’s Office. The prosecutors are Assistant Attorney General Scott Marlow and King County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Patrick Hinds.

The investigation and prosecution were conducted with important assistance from the Washington State Patrol, Washington State Department of Ecology, Public Health of Seattle-King County, King County Permitting and Land Use, King County Stormwater Management and the King County Prosecuting Attorney.

Attorney General Ferguson created the Counsel for Environmental Protection in 2016 to protect our environment and the safety and health of all Washingtonians.