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October 2, 1998

Criminal Charges Filed Alleging Falsification of Records

by Two Fairfield Water Treatment Plant Officials

FAIRFIELD-- The Attorney General's Office today filed preliminary criminal complaints alleging that two officials of the Fairfield Water Treatment Plant knowingly falsified reports that the plant was required to provide to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

The charges were filed in Jefferson County District Court in Fairfield. Separate criminal complaints and affidavits were filed naming Bert Jester and Harry R. Smith. Each faces a charge of felonious misconduct in office.

The defendants were ordered to make an initial court appearance at 10 a.m. on October 19, 1998.

The charges result from a cooperative investigation involving the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation, and the Iowa Attorney General's Office. The Attorney General's Office is serving in the role of criminal prosecutor at the request of Jefferson County Attorney John Morrissey.

The DNR stated today that Fairfield's drinking water is considered safe.

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