Owner of A USA Logistics Charged with Wire and Mail Fraud
On November 10, 2014, Gregory Sclafani was charged by criminal complaint in U.S. District Court, Brooklyn, New York, with mail and wire fraud for defrauding consumers after they scheduled an auto shipment with Sclafani’s company, A USA Logistics. On November 13, 2014, Sclafani was arrested, without incident, by DOT-OIG Special Agents, U.S. Postal Inspectors, and New York State Police.
The complaint alleged that from January 2008 to present, Sclafani, the owner of various auto transport broker entities, engaged in a scheme to defraud consumers by advertising long distance auto transport on the internet; but, after consumers booked the trips and deposited monies, their cars were oftentimes not shipped and Sclafani absconded with their money. Additionally, it is alleged that Sclafani routinely committed bank fraud by withdrawing money from customers' bank accounts without their authorization or knowledge. The investigation has identified at least 100 victims who have been double-billed for the service or defrauded, via the unauthorized bank account withdrawals, with a monetary loss to consumers of approximately $600,000.
The interstate transport of vehicles by brokers is regulated by FMCSA. Sclafani's authority to operate A USA Logistics, was revoked by FMCSA in January 2012; however, a year later, Sclafani created a new brokerage entity, named New Logistics, LLC that did not have FMCSA operation authority. New Logistics' address in North Carolina was later found to be a graveyard. It is believed that Sclafani has created as many as 45 differently-named companies to engage in his fraudulent activities.
As noted in the complaint, the New York State Attorney General's Office has a pending civil contempt action against Sclafani for similar fraudulent vehicle transport brokerage schemes. In October 2011, Sclafani agreed to a stipulated settlement requiring, among other things, that he be permanently barred from participation in the business of auto transport brokerage. To date, Sclafani has not certified his compliance with said stipulated settlement.
We are conducting this investigation with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the New York State Police.
Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.