Anchorage vehicle repair shop co-owners plead guilty to Clean Air Act violations

Three owners of an Anchorage vehicle repair shop have pled guilty to illegal vehicle modifications resulting in violations of the Clean Air Act.
Published: Nov. 9, 2022 at 4:35 PM AKST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Three owners of an Anchorage vehicle repair shop have pled guilty to illegal vehicle modifications resulting in violations of the Clean Air Act.

According to a release from the District of Alaska Attorney’s Office, the owners of Arm Rippin Toys, a vehicle repair shop that modifies, repairs, and maintains diesel vehicles, “tampered with federally mandated monitoring devices on private and commercial diesel vehicles and removed required air pollution control equipment on at least 37 vehicles between July 2019 and September 2020.”

Under normal operating conditions, onboard diagnostic systems will notice the removal or malfunction of emissions control equipment. Removing or disabling a vehicle’s emissions control system can increase the amount of particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and non-methane hydrocarbons released by vehicles.

“Installing emissions defeat equipment in passenger vehicles results in a massive increase in air pollution from even a single vehicle,” said Special Agent in Charge Scot Adair of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Criminal Investigation Division in Alaska. “EPA and its law enforcement partners will continue to hold accountable those who jeopardize human health and the environment for the sake of profit.”

In total, Arm Rippin Toys collected approximately $100,000 for performing unlawful modifications on diesel vehicles, the release stated.

Co-owners Zachary John Czubac, 25, and Michael Wayne Hanzuk II, 30 were both sentenced to five years probation, a $66,000 fine, and to serve 180 hours of community service as a condition of their probation. A third owner, Patrick Fleming Thomas Fleming, 29, is still awaiting sentencing.