Sabine Transportation CEO convicted in oil dumping case
A federal court jury in south Florida has convicted Rick D. Stickle, chairman and chief executive officer of Sabine Transportation for illegally dumping oil-contaminated grain into the South China Sea in February 1999.
The contaminated grain was part of a U.S. government-financed food aid shipment.
The jury convicted Stickle of:
* Participating in a “multi-purpose conspiracy” to illegally dump the oil contaminated grain into the ocean.
* Obstructing a U.S. Coast Guard investigation through “false and misleading statements and records.”
* Defrauding and hampering the U.S. government’s efforts to enforce environmental protection laws and the regulations governing the carriage and delivery of donated agricultural commodities.
A Nov. 23 press release from the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida states that Sickle’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for Feb. 9, 2005. Each count carries a maximum statutory sentence of five years in prison and a fine of the greater of $250,000 per count or twice the gain or loss caused by the illegal conduct.
Other senior Sabine Transportation employees convicted for their involvement in the scheme include Michael R. Reeve, president; Michael M. Krider, port engineer; George K. McKay, master of the “Juneau,” and Philip J. Hitchens, chief officer of the “Juneau.”