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Hog farm ordered to pay for wetlands preservation

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RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- A Columbus County hog farm operator has been ordered to pay $1.5 million in fines and restitution for violations of the federal Clean Water Act.

US Attorney Thomas G. Walker announced Wednesday that $1 million in restitution paid by Freedman Farms will be provided to the North Carolina Coastal Land Trust to buy and preserve wetlands.

A federal judge in February ordered Clarkton-based Freedman to pay the restitution and an additional $500,000 fine after the company was found guilty of dumping hog waste into a stream leading to the Waccamaw River.

Freedman Farms president William B. Freedman was sentenced to six months in prison to be followed by six months of home confinement.

The restitution will be paid in five annual payments starting in January.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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