PIKEVILLE, Ky. (AP) - A former Army Corps of Engineers employee
in eastern Kentucky faces charges that he forged signatures and
issued discharge permits for mining companies without approval.
A Pikeville grand jury indicted Earl Jerry Sparks, 45, of
Sassafras in Knott County, on five counts of making false
statements, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported.
Sparks could not be reached for comment.
He is accused of forging signatures on some documents and
issuing some permits without submitting applications to the corps'
regulatory branch for a final decision. The documents were related
to a permit that allows mining companies to discharge dredge and
other fill materials into waterways.
The indictment, issued last week, said Sparks was supposed to
forward the information on the permits to a corps regulatory branch
Sparks allegedly forged the signature of the chief of the
regulatory branch on some of the permits, the indictment said.
The permits were issued from 2002 to 2005, the indictment said.
Corps spokesman Todd Hornback said Sparks has since resigned.
Irregularities with the permits were found during a routine audit,
he told the newspaper.
Information from: Lexington Herald-Leader,
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)