Bryan Cohen Jun. 26, 2013, 7:40pm

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (Legal Newsline) -- Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources on Monday announced a ruling that the Youngstown-based D&L Energy cannot keep its injection well permits.

The Ohio Oil and Gas Commission upheld a previous order Friday to revoke the well permits and require D&L Energy to properly dispose of stored material. D&L Energy had appealed the previous ruling.

"This is a significant step forward in an important case," DeWine said in a statement. "The commission's decision to deny D&L Energy's appeal is a win for the environment and for Ohio families."

D&L Energy owns and operates multiple oil and gas production wells and brine-waste injection wells in Ohio.

On Jan. 31, oil and brine-based mud was allegedly illegally discharged into a storm water drain that flowed into a tributary of the Mahoning River and into the Mahoning River directly.

The Division of Oil and Gas reacted to the alleged discharge by revoking D&L Energy's permits for injection wells, denying three pending injection well applications and ordering the timely cessation of three brine storage operations.

D&L Energy appealed the order to the commission March 4. The commission found it was legal to revoke the permits and to order the proper disposal of stored material. D&L Energy can appeal the decision.

In a related, pending federal case, Ben Lupo, the owner of D&L Energy and a shareholder, was indicted for his role in the alleged discharge.

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