The former owners of a San Marcos dairy were fined $45,000 in federal court Monday for illegally dumping barn waste into San Marcos Creek last year.
U.S. District Judge Earl B. Gilliam also ordered the men, Jacob Wilgenburg, 64, and his son Edward John, 24, to serve three years' probation and pay $5,000 in restitution to the Regional Water Quality Control Board.
Jacob Wilgenburg had pleaded guilty to one felony violation of the federal Clean Water Act; his son pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts.
The Wilgenburgs ran a concealed pipe from their dairy barn into the creek to avoid paying for a sewer hookup, according to Charles S. Crandall, an assistant U.S. attorney.
Discharge from dairy barns, which is generated when cows are washed down before milking, is heavily contaminated with fecal matter and urine and can contain viruses that cause diseases in humans, prosecutors charged.
The Wilgenburgs have 30 days in which to pay the fine.