Defrauding customers has earned officials with two trucking companies prison sentences ranging from a few months to several years.
In Missouri, the owners of Lebanon-based J&M Trucking have been sentenced following a federal trial last year in which they were found guilty of charges they defrauded the boat and trailer maker Tracker Marine by inflating shipping invoices and purchase orders.
James Ivey was sentenced to nearly six years in prison without parole. His wife, Melinda Ivey, received two and half years in prison without parole. Both were also ordered to pay nearly $800,000 in restitution.
The Iveys, along with co-defendant Paul Hunting of California, who was Tracker’s transportation manager, came up with a plan to defraud Tracker over a three-year period starting in 2006. It involved more than 2,500 phony invoices charging for J&M transport of boats and trailers to dealers. Hunting earlier pleaded guilty. He was sentenced to a year and a day in prison and ordered to pay close to $300,000 in restitution.
Meantime, in Wisconsin, people charged in a scheme involving kickbacks at the household brands maker SC Johnson have been sentenced.
A federal judge in Milwaukee gave Buske Intermodal and Buske Lines owner Thomas H. Buske six months in prison and six months home confinement. Buske pleaded no contest to charges that he and seven other men and women were involved in a plan in which the company billed inflated prices for trucking transportation in exchange for paying kickbacks to SC Johnson executives.
An audit by SC Johnson uncovered the scheme. Buske and a former SC Johnson transportation director bilked the company out of about $16 million, with Buske paying nearly a quarter of that amount in kickbacks to the transportation director.
In 2008 SC Johnson won a civil lawsuit and was awarded $208 million for its losses.