November 28, 2017
Virginia Trucking Companies and Four Corporate Officers Sentenced for Violating FMCSA Safety Regulations
On November 28, 2017, Beam Bros Trucking, Inc. (BBT) and Beam Bros Holding Corporation LLC (Beam Holding) were sentenced in U.S. District Court, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and ordered to pay $3.25 million, which includes a $2 million forfeiture, a $250,000 fine, and approximately $1 million in restitution to drivers defrauded of their pay. Gerald Beam, president and chief executive officer, and Garland Beam, vice president, were both sentenced to a 6-month home confinement, 2 years of probation, 100 hours of community service, and a $5,000 fine. Shaun Beam, operations manager, and Nickolas Kozel, chief financial officer, were sentenced to a 3-month home confinement, 2 years of probation, 100 hours of community service, and a $2,000 fine.
On May 16, 2017, BBT and Beam Holding pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States. Specifically, they were charged with falsification of records in contemplation of a Federal matter, which include drivers’ records of duty status (RODs) and timesheets. 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, i.e., that they knowingly violated FMCSA’s highway safety regulations.
BBT was one of the Nation’s largest contract carriers of mail for the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). Over the last 10 years, USPS paid BBT more than $500 million. Between 1999 and 2017, BBT knowingly encouraged, permitted, caused, or required BBT drivers to make trips in violation of FMCSA safety regulations designed to prevent commercial motor vehicle crashes caused by fatigued drivers. Those violations included creating routes that could not be completed within the hours of service (HOS) regulations and causing drivers to falsely record their duty statuses. FMCSA conducted five previous compliance investigations; in two of them, enforcement action was taken and a civil fine was assessed due to hours-of-service violations that endangered the traveling public.
DOT-OIG conducted this investigation jointly with the Department of Labor OIG, USPS-OIG, and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation, and with assistance from FMCSA.