Two Florida Men and a Corporation Indicted in Wire Fraud Case Related to Falsified Water Testing in Dale County
Montgomery, Ala. – Billy Ray Roberson, Sr., 60, of Milton, Florida; Darin Lewis, 46, of Crestview, Florida; and Roberson Excavation, Inc. (Roberson Excavation), a company headquartered in Milton, Florida were indicted and charged with conspiring to commit wire fraud, announced United States Attorney George L. Beck, Jr. The charge in the indictment stemmed from scheme to falsify water samples during the testing of new water lines. Both Roberson and Lewis were arrested today and made their initial appearances in federal court.
According to court documents, in 2014, the Dale County Water Authority hired Roberson Excavation to replace water lines in the Marley Mill neighborhood of Dale County. Mr. Roberson was the owner and president of Roberson Excavation. By February of 2015, Roberson Excavation was three months behind schedule on the job and paying daily penalties of $500 for each day that the project went incomplete. At that time, Mr. Roberson instructed his site supervisor, Darin Lewis, to falsify the testing required before the lines went into operation. Among the tests falsified were the tests used to determine whether harmful bacteria were present in the water.
If convicted of the conspiracy, each individual defendant faces a maximum sentence of 5 years’ imprisonment. Additionally, the corporate defendant faces a maximum fine of $250,000.
An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This case was investigated by the Environmental Protection Agency’s Criminal Investigations Division and Office of Inspector General. Assistant United States Attorney Jonathan S. Ross is prosecuting the case.