Two Virginia-based trucking companies and their executives have been charged with conspiracy, falsifying records, false statements, wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy, and money laundering conspiracy related to hours of service and labor violations.
Beam Bros Trucking Inc. (BBT) and its parent company, Beam Bros Holding Corp. LLC (Beam Holding); Gerald Beam, president and CEO; Garland Beam, vice president; Shaun Beam, operations manager; and Nickolas Kozel, chief financial officer, were charged in U.S. District Court, Harrisonburg, Virginia, in a 126-count indictment.
BBT is one of the nation’s largest contract carriers of mail for the United States Postal Service, according to the U.S. DOT Office of Inspector General. The company and its executives allegedly conspired to defraud the United States “by impeding the lawful government functions of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Department of Labor, and USPS.”
Over the last 10 years, USPS paid BBT more than half a billion dollars. From June 1999 to March 2017, BBT and its principals allegedly made trip schedules that violated hours of service regulations and falsified driver logs to hide HOS violations. FMCSA conducted two previous compliance investigations where enforcement action was taken due to HOS violations that endangered the traveling public.
BBT was also charged with violating the Service Contract Act, which requires federal contractors to pay its employees for all time worked. The Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division investigated BBT two previous times, which resulted in back pay for drivers.
All four defendants have pleaded not guilty. According to local media reports, the trial is scheduled to begin on May 22. Prosecutors expect the case to last two months with between 50 to 70 witnesses.