Woman Conceals Asbestos on Mississippi Queen, Pleads Guilty

Court RulingElaine Chiu of San Francisco pleaded guilty to concealing asbestos in the Mississippi Queen steamboat from regulators in Louisiana. The federal charge leaves Chiu facing up to two years in prison and a fine totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars. Cheery Way Inc., Chiu’s company, faces large fines and a five-year probation.

Last Wednesday, Chiu agreed to plead guilty for violating the Clean Air Act after evidence was filed showing that Chiu and Cheery Way knew of the asbestos on board, but the Pierre Part demolition contractor was not informed.

When the demolition began, the contractor did not know about the asbestos. Had they known, the demolition would have been more heavily regulated to help prevent asbestos exposure.

The Mississippi Queen was bought by Chiu in October of 2010 for $800,000 and was subject to be for scrap. According to court documents, Chiu allegedly hired a company to conduct an asbestos test and found fibers in the ceiling and walls and failed to disclose this information to regulators and Argosy Boat Co.

Exposure to asbestos can cause incurable cancer called mesothelioma. Without knowing there was a possible risk, contractors were put into unnecessary risk.

At Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC, we are committed to the safety of our clients. We know that anyone who develops mesothelioma as a result of asbestos exposure can deal with numerous hardships. Our goal is to help you seek the compensation you need to cover the costs of medical expenses, rehabilitation, lost wages, and more.

You can count on us every step of the way as we are deeply dedicated to guiding you through all matters from start to finish. Contact our firm today to get started on your case and learn how we can help you.