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A former Royal Dutch Shell official pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal safety regulation violations and making false statements connected to a 2012 jet fuel pipeline leak in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Randy Jones, a former corrosion coordinator for Shell Pipeline Company, pleaded guilty to knowingly failing to conduct bi-monthly voltage readings and an annual survey of the pipeline as required by the Pipeline Safety Act.

Jones, 44, also pleaded guilty to making a false statement and submitting false data to the Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration, the Department of Justice said.

The violations were in connection with a spill at a Shell owned commercial jet fuel pipeline at General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

In January 2012, a hole was discovered in the pipeline after jet fuel started contaminating soil surrounding the airport and at the nearby Wilson Creek.

The spilled fuel eventually melted asphalt on airport property.

Shell said about 9,000 gallons of jet fuel were released.

The response and cleanup for the spill cost $19.3 million.

Under the terms of the plea agreement each offense carries a maximum prison sentence of five years.

Jones will be sentenced on April 30, 2015.


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