New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a lawsuit on Thursday against landlord Florence Edelstein for allegedly polluting multiple properties with oil.
Edelstein, owner and CEO of Edel Family Management Corporation in Brooklyn, allegedly violated New York State's oil spill laws, which address the proper handling and storage of oil used for heating.
The lawsuit alleges Edelstein is responsible for 90 violations at 25 properties throughout Upper Manhattan, the Bronx and the Upper West Side. She allegedly failed to accurately register oil storage tanks with the state, failed to maintain spill prevention equipment, failed to maintain records of inspections, and failed to properly label tanks and other heating oil equipment.
Edelstein didn't correct the violations as mandated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation in July. She also failed to pay $113,500 in penalties to the state.
“Oil spills pollute our land and water, and pose serious risks to public health and safety – and that is why New York has laws aimed at preventing environmental damage before it happens,” Schneiderman said. “Property owners have an obligation to protect our environment and our residents from the harm caused by oil spills. No one is above the law, and my office will hold people accountable when they ignore New York’s environmental laws.”