A North Carolina trucking company defrauded the U.S. Postal Service for around two years. BJ Trucking Company, Inc., spent over $1 million on illegal fuel purchases while working for USPS. Now, the company and its owners, the Cline family, will have to pay the government back.
BJ Trucking used to haul mail for the Postal Service. When you haul for USPS, the agency gives you a fuel card to fill up your vehicle as you go. USPS reimburses these fuel cards up to a certain amount.
However, the Greensboro-based company fueled up far too much. It used the cards to purchase hundreds of thousands of gallons of fuel illegally from 2014 to 2015. The final total of what they stole from the U.S. government is a whopping $1,679,086! A jury found both the company and its head of operations, Chad Cline, liable for that amount.
BJ Trucking Company violated the False Claims Act, also known as the Lincoln Law. This spells bad news for the company and its owner, Doug Cline. That’s because, under the False Claims Act, the government can now recover three times the amount of money that the company stole from it.
BJ Trucking Company’s Owner Also Transferred Money Illegally
The company’s transgressions go beyond just the fuel purchases, however. BJ Trucking experienced a period of insolvency, possibly due to the government withholding payment as it investigated the company. During this time, the company transferred more than $400,000 to Doug Cline, his sister, and another company that Cline ran.
This transfer violated the Federal Debt Collection Procedures Act. Under that law, the government can now void those transfers and recover that money. That brings the total bill for BJ Trucking and the Cline family up to over $5 million. The judge in the case still has to determine what civil penalties to impose on the defendants. That could drive the final price tag much higher.
At Raleigh Auto Transport, we are appalled at the behavior of this company. Running a company that uses trucks is no cake walk, but defrauding the government for fuel purchases is vile. We hope that the Clines learn the error of their ways and that the government recovers its stolen money.