Sims settles California recycling suit

Sims settles California case for $4.1 million

By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling

One of the nation's largest metal recycling companies has settled a suit over theft deterrence, but it continues to deny any wrongdoing in the case.

The North American division of Sims Metal Management had been facing a suit from San Francisco and Contra Costa county prosecutors that alleged the company had failed to follow guidelines the state has in place to curb metal theft. Prosecutors said that during sting operations, employees at Sims-owned facilities in Northern California accepted scrap that was clearly stolen; the facilities were also charged with failing to follow record-keeping requirements.

To settle the case, the company agreed to a total civil payment of $2.7 million and a reimbursement of $1.4 million for investigation costs.

In a press release, Sims defended its theft-deterrence efforts.

"In no way does today’s resolution mean that any actions by the company resulted in harm to the public or its customers," the release stated. "Nor did the Company admit to any liability in this case ... While the company disagreed with the size of the financial settlement in this case, the company believed it was important to put this disagreement behind it."

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