W.R Grace and Co. and seven senior employees were charged in an indictment released yesterday with conspiring for decades to hide the dangers posed by
asbestos contamination in a Montana vermiculite mine. They were also charged with intentionally exposing miners and others in the small town of Libby
to illness and death. Asbestos contamination in Libby came to light in 1999 after national news reports first linked the pollution from a nearby
vermiculite mine to the deaths and illnesses of area residents.
A federal indictment charges that W.R. Grace and Co. and seven of its executives knew a mine was releasing cancer-causing asbestos into the air and
tried to hide the danger from workers and townspeople.
A newspaper study linked nearly 200 deaths to asbestos from the vermiculite mine in the small town of Libby, about 130 miles northwest of Missoula
near the Canadian border. More than 1,200 became ill over the 30 years that Grace, a global supplier of chemicals and building materials, operated the
The federal grand jury handing down the indictment said top Grace executives and managers kept secret numerous studies spelling out the risk the
asbestos posed to its customers, employees and Libby residents.
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I wonder what took the government so long to file this indictment. Grace filed for bankruptcy in 2001 so I doubt they can fine the company.
I guess all one can hope for is jail time for those that were aware of the conspiracy but that will not help the victims of the families involved.
And as we speak, the whte house continues it's assult on the rights of the injured to fight back through litigation. The right wing conspiracy to
eliminate any environmental safe-guards to public health no longer hides in the subtle double-talk legislation of past Republican Administrations, but
is obviousto anyone willing to use even the smallest portions of nueral activity.
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