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County of Sonoma California
Office of the District Attorney

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Environmental and Consumer Law Division

The Sonoma County District Attorney’s Environmental and Consumer Law Division (ECLD) enforces environmental laws and consumer protection in a fair and firm manner in order protect our citizens and environment from those who would pollute our air, ground or water or degrade our uniquely beautiful natural resources, as well as from those who would engage in fraudulent, dishonest or unlawful business practices.

Environmental Protection

The ECLD prosecutes defendants who are accused of environmental violations both criminally and civilly in a wide range of fields, including illegal handling or disposal of hazardous waste, water pollution, air pollution, natural resources destruction, timber harvesting, public nuisance, workers safety and others. The ECLD works closely with local, state and federal law enforcement and resource protection agencies to provide a coordinated and comprehensive response to violations of environmental laws.

Since its establishment in December, 1989, the ECLD has procured misdemeanor and felony convictions as well as civil judgments and injunctions against numerous individuals and corporations resulting in the imposition of jail time, criminal or civil penalties, agency costs reimbursement, site clean ups, resource restoration and funds for environmental education, habitat restoration and environmental enforcement efforts.

In addition to environmental prosecutions, the ECLD has joined with both government, community, and industry groups to provide education, training and, in some instances, financial assistance to local business and property owners in order to assist them in complying with the complex range of environmental laws and regulations in effect in Sonoma County.

The public is encouraged to report violations of environmental laws to the local police or sheriff’s office or, if it is Fish and Wildlife related, to call the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s toll-free reporting line at (888) DFG-CALTIPS [(888) 334-2258].

Consumer Protection

The ECLD also prosecutes violations of California’s unfair competition and false advertising laws to protect Sonoma County citizens, and to maintain a level playing field for our businesses. The ECLD has successfully prosecuted consumer protection violations, both civilly and criminally, in a number of areas, including misleading telephone solicitations, false advertising, health and beauty scams, retail store price overcharges, mobile home rent control, slack fill products, Proposition 65, adulterated or misbranded products, and public nuisance abatement.

The ECLD works closely with law enforcement and consumer protection agencies at the federal, state and local levels, including the Federal Trade Commission, the California Attorney General’s Office and other District Attorneys throughout the state. Since its inception, the ECLD has obtained several million dollars in penalties, fines, restitution for consumers, and reimbursement of investigative agency costs. The ECLD also has an active consumer outreach program, and has provided speakers to various community groups on a wide range of topics, including consumer scams, identity theft, con artists targeting the elderly, and foreclosure rescue scams. The ECLD also enforces Brown Act violations, election law violations, misuse of public funds, political corruption, and workers’ compensation fraud, insurance fraud and major fraud violations.

The public is encouraged to report violations of consumer protection laws to the local police or sheriff’s office or, to contact the ECLD directly at (707) 565-3161 to obtain a consumer complaint form.

For further information on environmental or consumer protection, please consult the following helpful websites:

Sonoma County Agency Links

State of California Agency Links

Federal Agency Links

Consumer Protection Website Links

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