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Standard Hotel Agrees to Plead Guilty for Chemical Dumping

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It was MLK Day 2009 when Downtown's Standard Hotel greeted the public and investigating authorities with a vomit-inducing "cloud of noxious gas," thanks to the "two 50-gallon drums of muriatic acid and chlorine," they had dumped. Now the hotel's corporate operator "has agreed to plead guilty to violating federal environmental laws," according to a Department of Justice press release. The plea comes with a criminal fine of $200k (the maximum under law) and a $150k community service payment. The chemical dump was done by order by a maintenance worker; the fumes that resulted from the mix of chemicals spread through the storm drain and were released into the nearby 7th and Metro subway station.