Former Sioux City Councilman Aaron Rochester is under new heat with the law. The Iowa Attorney General’s office is preparing to take legal action against Rochester and his business Recycletronics.
It comes in the wake of a series of reports by 9 Investigates uncovering alleged illegal dumping by his company in direct violation of state and federal regulations.
In a report obtained by 9 Investigates, a lawyer for the Iowa Department of Resources outlines the case that the state attorney general is expected to pursue against Aaron Rochester and his company Recycletronics.
That report documents numerous instances where Rochester is accused of illegally dumping electronic waste rather than recycling it.
But there’s also a new allegation against Rochester – a default on tens of thousands of dollars his business was loaned under a state environmental program.
State officials have a meeting set for later this month to move forward with legal action against Rochester and Recycletronics seeking to levy major fines.
Rochester wasn’t at Recycletronicsand we’ve been unable to reach him for comment. But in prior interviews with 9 Investigates, the former city councilman has denied any wrongdoing.
“They just came to take inventory and we’re working with the IDNR. Like I said, I’ll eventually be shutting the business down but I was really not going to say that to the public yet, but you guys kind of caught me,” says Rochester.
Reporter asks, “So if anyone said there’s illegal dumping or a deeper investigation, what would be your comment toward that?
Rochester responds, “What do you mean dumping?”
Reporters ask,”With the led?”
Rochester responds, “No, we’re not dumping the led anywhere.”
But 9 Investigates has documented repeated past visits by state and federal regulators to Recycletronics’ operations including the discovery of what authorities say is a large illegal dumping pile responsible for lead soil contamination.