May 16, 2017
Virginia Trucking Companies and Four Corporate Officers Pleaded Guilty to Conspiracy Charges
On May 16, 2017, Beam Bros Trucking, Inc. (BBT); Beam Bros Holding Corporation LLC (Beam Holding); Gerald Beam, president and chief executive officer; Garland Beam, vice president; Shaun Beam, operations manager; and Nickolas Kozel, chief financial officer, pleaded guilty to Federal conspiracy charges in U.S. District Court, Harrisonburg, Virginia.
BBT pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States, specifically, falsification of records in contemplation of a Federal matter. Beam Holding, BBT’s parent company, also pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Gerald Beam, Garland Beam, Shaun Beam, and Nickolas Kozel each pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States, specifically that they knowingly violated the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) highway safety regulations.
As part of the plea agreement, BBT and Beam Holding agreed to pay a fine of $250,000 and forfeit $2 million of fraudulently obtained proceeds related to United States Postal Service (USPS) mail transportation contracts. Beam Brothers will also pay approximately $1 million in restitution to drivers who were defrauded of their pay.
BBT is one of the Nation’s largest contract carriers of mail for the USPS. Over the last 10 years, USPS paid BBT more than half a billion dollars. Between 1999 and 2017, BBT knowingly violated the FMCSA safety regulations by encouraging, permitting, causing or requiring BBT drivers to make trips in violation of Federal safety regulations designed to prevent commercial motor vehicle crashes caused by fatigued drivers. Those violations included falsely recording their duty statuses. FMCSA conducted two previous compliance investigations where enforcement action was taken due to hours-of-service violations that endangered the traveling public.
DOT-OIG conducted this investigation jointly with DOL-OIG, USPS-OIG, and IRS-Criminal Investigation, and with assistance from FMCSA.