Published: Saturday 15 February 1997

A recent ruling by a US appeals court has outraged environmentalists and prosecutors. The court -- while ruling on a case against a convenience store owner who dumped 21,366 litres of gasoline into the sewers of Conroe, Texas -- said that prosecutors have to prove that polluters were aware that they were causing pollution. The court thus set a tougher standard for proving environmental cases, which will strengthen the case of defendants in environmental cases across the country. Prosecutors are now planning to seek a review of the ruling by the Supreme Court.

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