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Press Release

Minocqua Man Who Tried to Conceal Replica "Dukes of Hazard" Car from Bankruptcy Trustee Convicted of Bankruptcy Fraud

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Wisconsin

MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Bruce Polczynski, 57, Minocqua, Wisconsin, was sentenced today by Chief U.S. District Judge James D. Peterson to three years of probation and a $1,000 fine for bankruptcy fraud.  Polczynski pled guilty to this charge on March 31, 2023. 

In pleading guilty, Polczynski admitted that he lied to the U.S. Bankruptcy Trustee about assets so they would not be used to pay creditors, specifically, Polczynski lied to conceal a 1969 Dodge Charger replica of the General Lee vehicle from the Dukes of Hazard television show and a 1979 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am.  

U.S. Attorney O’Shea noted that Polczynski’s deception was quickly discovered, and the vehicles were sold to pay creditors.  According to O’Shea, “Polczynski’s story, where he was quickly stripped of the assets he tried to hide, suffered the embarrassment of federal prosecution, and received a felony conviction, is a compelling cautionary tale for anyone considering bankruptcy fraud.”    

 In imposing sentence, Judge Peterson noted that the bankruptcy system—like many government institutions—”depends critically on the honesty” of those who engage with it.  According to Judge Peterson, while three years of probation was the “just sentence” given Polczynski’s health and financial circumstances, a prison term may be required in other bankruptcy fraud cases to “amplify” the general deterrence message. 

The charge against Polczynski was the result of an investigation conducted by the Office of the United States Trustee and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  U.S. Attorney Timothy M. O’Shea prosecuted this case. 

Updated July 6, 2023