A man from Tracy has been convicted by a San Francisco federal court on charges relating to asbestos. Thirty seven year old Wassim Mohammed Azizi was accused of violation of the Clean Air Act when he illegally demolished a Hayward building that he owned, which was filled with asbestos.

The man tore down the building between the end of 2001 and the first couple of months of 2002, which officials say put both employees and the general public at risk. The man is involved in the renovation and sale of commercial properties.

Azizi hired an unlicensed handyman to tear down the asbestos laden building. He was convicted of breaching the Clean Air Act, failure to properly remove a hazardous material, and violating work safety practices.

An official from the Environmental Protection Agency stated: “The defendant not only risked exposing the public and any workers at the site to asbestos, a known carcinogen, but also tried to cover up his crime by lying to the local enforcement agency.”

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