Minnesota Trucking Company Owner Pleads Guilty to Wire Fraud
On July 29, 2011, Marlon Louis Danner, operator of Danner, Inc. and Bulldog Leasing, Inc., pled guilty in U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, to wire fraud for his role in a scheme to defraud truck drivers out of settlement funds the drivers should have received pursuant to an agreement between Danner and the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT).
In 2008 and 2009, Mr. Danner supplied drivers for a federally funded Minnesota highway reconstruction project and was required to pay a minimum truck rental rate to the drivers. The investigation determined that Mr. Danner underpaid the drivers more than $185,000 in back wages. A settlement was reached which required Mr. Danner to pay the back wages to the drivers. Shortly after, Mr. Danner informed certain drivers that the money did not belong to them and that they were required to return the money to Mr. Danner once they received the money from MnDOT. From March through May 2010, many of the drivers wrote checks to the Danner, Inc. and Bulldog Leasing, Inc., as directed by the defendant and through his office manager. Mr. Danner failed to disclose and affirmatively concealed these repayments to MnDOT.
This investigation was conducted jointly with the MnDOT Labor Compliance Unit and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.