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MADISON - A Chippewa Falls man was found in contempt of court earlier this week after failing to remove underground fuel storage tanks as required by Department of Commerce orders, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced today. Judge Steven Cray of Chippewa County issued the contempt order at the request of the Department of Justice, following a hearing at which the defendant, Brad Rihn, failed to appear.
According to the court's order, Rihn failed to remove the tanks at his 304 W. River St. property as required by a previous court order. The Department of Commerce estimates that removal could cost $10,000 to $20,000, depending on whether the tanks leaked and contaminated surrounding soils which will need to be cleaned up. The court's order required that Rihn pay, in addition to the $9,000 in penalties and costs awarded to the State earlier this year, an additional $20,000 to fund the tank removal and any necessary contaminated soil remediation.
Under the court's order, if Rihn does not pay these amounts September 5, 2008:
Assistant Attorney General Shari Eggleson is prosecuting the case, which was referred to the Department of Justice by the Department of Commerce.