Pilot Flying J engaged in years of rebate fraud, feds say

Published April, 18 2013

pilotFederal documents released April 18 allege that Pilot Flying J has been engaged for years in a fraudulent scheme of withholding rebates owed to customers on fuel purchases.

The documents further allege that Pilot Flying J CEO Jimmy Haslam — the majority owner of the Cleveland Browns — knew about the scheme.

A statement from Haslam did not directly dispute the affidavit, but said “any willful wrongdoing by any employee of this company at any time is intolerable.”

The affidavit says that the company and certain Pilot Flying J salespersons withheld the rebates in order to receive larger commissions on fuel sales and increase PFJ profits.

PFJ affidavitAccording to the affidavit, some customers didn’t receive tens of thousands of dollars a month in rebates, and during the years the fraud allegedly occurred, tens of millions of dollars owed to customers went unpaid.

The company’s headquarters were raided on Monday by dozens of agents from the FBI and from the IRS — all said to be connected to the company’s fuel rebate program.

Linked to the right — and here — is the full 120-page document released by a federal court, which say that Haslam was in on meetings in which the tactics of charging certain clients higher than agreed upon prices, concealing that information and then pocketing extra money were discussed.

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