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Guilty plea in Bakken disposal well case

Texas man pleads guilty to three felony violations of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act in connection with saltwater disposal well

A 43-year-old Texas man has pled guilty to three felony charges after operating a saltwater disposal well without a permit in the Bakken tight oil play in North Dakota.

Jason Halek admitted to three violations of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act at his Halek 5-22 well in Stark County, according to a statement from the US Department of Justice.

First, he did not have state regulators on hand to witness a pressure test of the well to ensure it was properly constructed.

Second, he did not give written notice of the first injection at the site.

Third, he admitted that he injected produced water down the annulus of the wellbore, all three of which are violations of the regulations governing disposal wells

Halek’s partner Nathan Garber already pled guilty to other charges stemming from the disposal operation in fall 2014 and the pair will now both be sentenced on 31 July.

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