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Attorney General's News Release

June 7, 2010

Attorney General Koster settles with Morgan County woman in contempt of court case

Rocky Mount, Mo. - Attorney General Chris Koster has obtained a contempt judgment against a Rocky Mount woman who failed to comply with the terms of a court order related to violations of Missouri's safe drinking water laws.

Koster said the court in March 2008 ordered Linda Trapino, owner of Uncle Sam's Ice Cream and Deli, to submit drinking water samples each month to be tested for contaminants and to pay a civil penalty of $2,445. The court suspended civil penalties of approximately $22,000 if the defendant complied with the law. Trapino failed to test the drinking water for bacteriological contaminates for three months in 2008 and four months in 2009 and has paid only $92.77 of the civil penalty, which was paid through state-executed garnishments.

Koster's office filed a contempt of court lawsuit earlier this year. The court has prohibited Trapino from operating Uncle Sam's Ice Cream and Deli unless the public water system is fully compliant with Missouri law. In addition, Trapino was ordered to pay $6,752.23 in civil penalties, as well as court costs.

"This business was given the opportunity to correct violations of Missouri's drinking water and clean water laws," Koster said. "Consumers have a right to expect that public drinking water is safe. Our office will not look the other way when businesses fail to comply with the law."

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