Buffalo, NY - Former Buffalo Bills fullback Sean P. Doctor and Raj Chopra were indicted on federal charges regarding their companies violating asbestos abatement protocols. Handed down on Thursday, the 16-count indictment also includes violations of the Clean Air Act and conspiracy charges.
Doctor, owner and operator of S.D. Specialty Services, and Chopra, owner and operator of Comprehensive Employee Management, both Western New York based companies, worked on several area projects that jeopardized the health and safety of the community.
Asbestos abatement or removal is a highly regulated process that ensures the employees that come into contact with the deadly toxin along with others in the area of the removal are protected. Professional asbestos abatement specialists carefully contain and decontaminate buildings that have asbestos.
Doctor and Chopra's companies worked together on two major asbestos abatement projects in the Buffalo community include the Graystone Building and the Roosevelt Park Shelter. Further, the pair also removed asbestos from Grant Street vacant houses. Reports are unclear where the asbestos was found in each project.
The indictments claim that the asbestos removed from these properties were unsafely stored. Also, the indictments include conspiracy in which company employees were claimed as clerical instead of asbestos abatement workers for workmen's compensation purposes.
Asbestos is a carcinogen, known to cause cancer in humans after exposure. Typically, asbestos exposure stems from improper contact with the mineral that causes small particles to become airborne. These particles may then be inhaled or ingested, embedding them in the protective tissue surrounding the heart, lungs or abdominal cavity. Though this form of cancer is rare, mesothelioma only develops from asbestos exposure and is routinely diagnosed among people who came into consistent contact with the hazard.
Asbestos is commonly found in older buildings, building materials, vintage cars and in ship building. Banned in most industrialized nations, the United States no longer mines for asbestos or manufactures products containing asbestos, nor does it except asbestos laden imports.