Miami man on lam for decade pleads responsible to importing AC refrigerant from China


Un hombre de la Florida pasará 20 años en la cárcel por intentar suministrar apoyo materials a la organización terroristas ISIS.


A Miami businessman who had been a fugitive for 10 years whereas going through fees of illegally importing massive quantities of air-conditioning refrigerant from China was lastly arrested this spring and admitted to his crime on Monday in federal court docket.

Jorge G. Murrillo, 69, pleaded responsible to conspiring to violate the Clean Air Act by importing greater than 680,000 kilos of hydrochlorofluorocarbon-22 that was value about $1.5 million, based on court docket data. His plan was to promote the refrigerant on the black marketplace for residential use, prosecutors stated. HCFC-22 was broadly used for air-conditioning and heat-pump techniques however was being restricted for environmental causes.

Murrillo, who had been residing for a decade exterior the nation earlier than his arrest in late May, faces as much as 5 years in jail at his Sept. 20 sentencing in Miami federal court docket earlier than U.S. District Judge Donald Graham.

The Clean Air Act regulates air pollution, together with ozone-depleting greenhouse gases corresponding to HCFC-22, which are actually being phased out. Under a world treaty to scale back consumption, the United States issued restricted allowances for the manufacturing and importation of HCFC-22. To legally import the compound gasoline coolant, an individual or firm needed to get hold of an “unexpended consumption allowance” from the Environmental Protection Agency.

A decade-old indictment alleges that Murrillo and his Miami Beach firm, JP Money, Inc., didn’t have permission from the federal authorities when the businessman imported HCFC-22 from China to South Florida in 2007.

According to court docket data, Murrillo and a co-conspirator negotiated with a Chinese producer and purchased massive portions of HCFC-22, importing the refrigerant by means of South Florida ports. At no level had been Murrillo and his firm allowed to import HCFC-22 from China, based on federal prosecutor Thomas Watts-Fitzgerald.

Murrillo’s co-defendant, Norberto Guada, pleaded responsible in 2012 to illegally importing HCFC-22, and he served six months in jail and one other six months of house confinement, court docket data present.

Jay Weaver writes about federal crime on the crossroads of South Florida and Latin America. Since becoming a member of the Miami Herald in 1999, he’s lined the federal courts nonstop, from Elian’s custody battle to A-Rod’s steroid abuse. He was a part of the Herald group that received the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for breaking news on Elian’s seizure by federal brokers. He and three Herald colleagues had been 2019 Pulitzer Prize finalists for explanatory reporting for a collection on gold smuggling between South America and Miami.

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