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Former Executives Have to Pay Compensation

Three men who are former executives of Firm Build, a non-profit organization that is no longer operational, have been ordered to pay $1.8 million in compensation to 65 students who were exposed to airborne asbestos after their company directed workers to illegally remove debris containing asbestos from a former air force base in Atwater, Northern California.

Joseph Cuellar of Fresno, aged 74, Patrick Bowman of Los Banos, 48, and 52 year old Rudolph Buendia of Planada have been sentenced to between 24 and 27 months in prison in the case having pled guilty to one count of violating the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants Law, and no-contest to state felony charges of treating, handling or disposing of asbestos in a manner that caused an unreasonable risk of serious injury to students.

Firm Build was construction training company that was performing demolition and renovation work to convert the former Air Force base motor pool into an automotive mechanic training center in 2005.

According to Federal prosecutors, Bowman, Cuellar and Buendia cut corners by knowingly using students from Workplace Learning Academy to remove and dispose of insulation containing asbestos on pipes and other components without proper protective equipment or taking protective measures, under the guise of involving them in work experience and job training programs.

The $1.8 million restitution will go exclusively toward the cost of monitoring the lifetime health of the 65 people who were exposed to the asbestos.

If you have been diagnosed with an asbestos related disease, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Contact the Law Office of Brayton Purcell, LLP  at  (800) 598-0314 immediately, or contact us online for a free consultation.