MACHIAS (AP) – An eastern Maine junkyard owner failed to report to the county jail by the deadline ordered after he ignored a court order to clean up his sites and observe state environmental laws, a prosecutor said Tuesday.

Harry Smith Jr., 62, of Meddybemps, was ordered last week to report by 9 a.m. Monday to the Washington County Jail by Superior Court Justice Ellen Gorman for violating terms of his probation requiring him to clean up his junkyards and engage in no further environmental violations.

Smith still had not turned himself in by Tuesday afternoon, Assistant Attorney General Leanne Robbin said.

Gorman’s order stemmed from Smith’s 1999 conviction for violating state Department of Environmental Protection orders not to accept more tires at his junkyards in Washington County. He was placed on probation in March 1999.

Smith has served jail stints of up to 60 days for past violations of terms of his probation, Robbin said. Gorman last week ordered Smith to serve six months for the latest violation.

“The previous probation revocations have been in dribs and drabs with the idea, maybe he’ll comply this time if he gets this little 30-day or 60-day sentence,” Robbin said. “And this time the judge just threw up her hands and said, ‘I’m going to revoke the entire six month period hanging over his head.”‘

A message left with Smith on Tuesday afternoon was not imediately returned.

Smith operates four Washington County junkyards where he has accumulated hazardous waste since at least 1986, prosecutors said.

In a separate case, Smith was sentenced this past March to four years in prison with all but one year suspended after being convicted by a jury of hazardous waste crimes. Smith remains on bail pending an appeal.

Three cleanups have been conducted at Smith’s junkyards by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state DEP. Smith was criminally charged after two cleanups that cost about $2 million were completed.

Thousands of compressed gas cylinders, a trailer full of transformers containing polychlorinated biphenyls that were leaking into the ground, and another trailer full of calcium carbide were found, prosecutors said.

The DEP spent more than $1.7 million in a new cleanup effort, and costs were expected to top $3 million.

Smith violated a cleanup order by transporting the gas cylinders over public roads in unregistered and unsafe vehicles, prosecutors said. The court also found that Smith has failed to comply with a number of other probation requirements.

AP-ES-07-22-03 1610EDT



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