Former Haslam top execs plead guilty to ripping off truckers in fuel scheme

Criminal trial set for October involving 4 others

CHATANOOGA, TENN. - Four former executives of Browns owner Jimmy Haslam's Knoxville based truck-stop company have pleaded guilty to overcharging truckers in an elaborate fuel rebate scheme.

The  FBI investigation in fraudulent billing came to light following an April, 2013 raid at Haslam's Pilot Flying J headquarters in Knoxville.

In a federal courtroom in Chatanooga, Tennessee Thursday, Haslam's former vice-president of sales John Freeman admitted his role in the fraudulent scheme.

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Three others, including regional sales manager John Spiewak, director of sales Vickie Borden and regional sales representative Katy Bibee also pleaded guilty.

So far, 18 former Pilot employees have struck plea deals and the company has paid out $92 million in civil fines and $85 million more to truckers in a class action settlement.

Haslam has not been charged with a crime and has insisted he knew nothing of the fraudulent scheme to cheat truckers.

The criminal trial of four remaining former employees--including a former President--is scheduled to begin October 31.

 

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