Freedom Fence Foreman Indicted For Committing Fraud On A Highway Project
On October 21, 2015, Devin Rhyneer, foreman for Freedom Fence, Belgrade, Missouri, was indicted for committing fraud and/or aiding and abetting fraud. The fraud charges are related to the quality of work performed, and the materials furnished on a federally funded highway project in Missouri.
The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) alleged that highway guardrail was improperly installed on a federally funded highway project on Routes W and PP in Jefferson County, Missouri. The project awarded $5.95 million to J.H. Berra Construction Co., Inc., who subcontracted the installation of guardrail to Freedom Fence, a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise, for $203,195.
On April 1, 2015, MoDOT randomly selected and removed three guardrail posts installed by Freedom Fence to check the length. In all, approximately 975 guardrail posts were pulled, affecting almost 2,000 lineal feet of guardrail. 564 posts were short of the required six foot length minimum, and 27 were unmeasurable (meaning they were so mangled that MoDOT could not determine the length). MoDOT retained about 40-50 posts for evidentiary purposes.
We are conducting this investigation with assistance from MODOT.
Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.