Conceptos Group Inc. was recently convicted in a Newmarket, Ontario court of one violation under the Environmental Protection Act, fined $30,000 plus a victim fine surcharge of $7,500, and given 45 days to pay. Juan Carlos Velazquez Ortega, a Director of the company, was convicted of one violation under the Environmental Protection Act, fined $10,000 plus a victim fine surcharge of $2,500, and given 45 days to pay.

The convictions were the result of an investigation by the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks at a property in Whitchurch-Stouffville, Ontario in October 2020. The Ministry had received a report from a owner of a property that waste had been deposited on the property without their permission by Conceptos Group Inc.

In February 2021, the ministry contacted the company to request information about the source of the deposited material. In March 2021, Juan Carlos Velazquez Ortega, the company director, responded to the ministry by email and attached an engineer’s report related to the Woodside Square Mall Project.

The ministry’s investigation revealed that the deposited material at the site did not originate from the Woodside Square Mall Project. Accordingly, the defendants’ email to the ministry was false and misleading.

The ministry’s Environmental Investigations and Enforcement Branch investigated and laid charges which resulted in the convictions.