Pilot Flying J engaged in fraud for many years, Haslam aware, according to report

The Plain Dealer’s John Caniglia is reporting that Jimmy Haslam’s Pilot Flying J travel centers has engaged in fraud for many years, according to an affidavit.

“Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam’s travel center company for “many years” engaged in a fraud scheme to keep money owed to customers as gas rebates, according to documents filed in federal court Thursday,” writes Caniglia. “Employees targeted unsophisticated trucking companies through a rebate program. Federal documents unsealed today also say he was present for discussions about the rebate fraud activities.”

Caniglia describes a 120-page affidavit to a search warrant that says Pilot Flying J sales employees withheld fuel price rebates and discounts in an attempt to boost company profitability as well as personal sales commissions. The most damning evidence may be in the report that Haslam, majority owner of the Cleveland Browns, was aware of the fraud.

The entire affadavit can be read within the original Caniglia report. This story is still developing. Neither the Browns nor Jimmy Haslam (who was in Berea today) have commented about the case.

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