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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Virginia

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Beam Brothers Trucking, Beam Brother Holding Company Plead Guilty to a Pair of Federal Felony Conspiracy Charges

Four Corporate Officers Plead Guilty to Conspiracy to Violate Highway Safety Regulations

Harrisonburg, VIRGINIA – A Mount Crawford based trucking company that formerly hauled United States mail, as well as four of its officers, the President, Vice-President, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer, pled guilty yesterday in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Harrisonburg to federal conspiracy charges, Acting United States Attorney Rick A. Mountcastle announced.


Beam Brothers pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States, that is falsification of records in contemplation of a federal matter. Beam Brothers Holding, the parent company of Beam Brothers Trucking, also pled guilty today to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.


As part of the plea agreement, Beam Brothers agreed to pay a fine of $250,000 and forfeit $2,000,000 of fraudulently obtained proceeds. Beam Brothers will also pay approximately $1,000,000 in restitution to drivers who were defrauded of their pay.


In addition, the four most senior officers of the company pled guilty to related misdemeanor conspiracy charges. In separate Informations, Gerald Wayne Beam, 67, Garland Crawford Beam, 62, Shaun Crawford Beam, 36, all of Mount Crawford, and Nickolas Gene Kozel, 40, of Harrisonburg, each pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States, to knowingly violate the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) highway safety regulations.


According to evidence presented by Assistant United States Attorneys Stephen J. Pfleger and Christopher Kavanaugh, between 1999 and 2017, Beam Brothers Trucking knowingly violated the FMCSA safety regulations by encouraging, permitting, causing or requiring drivers for Beam Brothers Trucking 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; encouraging and permitting some Beam Brothers Trucking commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers to falsify their time sheets to report fewer hours worked than they actually worked; telling some Beam Brothers Trucking CMV drivers that they would not be paid for short rest periods, for time waiting for their trailers to be loaded or unloaded at postal facilities; failing to inform some Beam Brothers Trucking CMV drivers of pay requirements of the mail contracts; failing to review and consider some Beam Brothers Trucking CMV drivers’ request for additional pay and failing to pay some Beam Brothers Trucking CMV drivers as required under the federal Service Contract Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act and the mail contracts.


The investigation of the case was conducted by the U.S. Postal Service, Office of the Inspector General, the Department of Transportation, Office of the Inspector General, the Department of Labor, Office of the Inspector General and the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations. Assistant United States Attorney Stephen J. Pfleger and Christopher Kavanaugh prosecuted the case for the United States.

Updated May 17, 2017