U.S. District Judge James M. Moody approved a $84.9 million settlement in the Pilot Flying J fuel rebate scandal in a Little Rock, Arkansas courtroom Monday.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Pilot Flying J attorney Aubrey Harwell Jr. Wednesday afternoon blasted accusations of witness tampering against CEO Jimmy Haslam, saying Haslam wants only "to do the right thing."
The lawyer for a Georgia trucking company accused Haslam earlier Wednesday of witness tampering and cheating customers once again as the fallout from a federal fuel rebate fraud probe continues.
What Haslam's doing deserves praise instead of scorn, Harwell said.
"I fail to understand how anybody can all anything like that inappropriate," Harwell said.
"Fair is fair, but overreaching is not fair. It's absolutely outrageous. It's ludicrous. It's completely contrary to the truth of the matter."
Haslam has said he's making a point to meet with trucking customers who might have been shorted on fuel rebates and discounts and repay them what they're owned. Mark Tate, the lawyer for Atlantic Coast Carriers of Hazlehurst, Ga., says that's too little, too late.
The company filed a lawsuit against Pilot in Knox County Circuit Court last week seeking class-action status and accusing the company of racketeering violations.
"We don't think it's appropriate for Jimmy Haslam and his PR machine to go around gladhanding the people who they were backhanding before," Tate said today. "He owes them more than he took from them."
Tate said Pilot owes the company interest on the lost money, along with damages as punishment. He said he'll file a motion this week asking a judge to stop Haslam from meeting with the companies.
Tate said he expects other Pilot customers to sign onto the lawsuit soon, maybe in a matter of days.
FBI and Internal Revenue Service agents raided Pilot headquarters in West Knoxville last week as part of a probe into claims of rebate fraud. Federal authorities have subpoenaed various Pilot sales executives but filed no charges so far.
More Jimmy Haslam Stories
Pilot Flying J CEO Jimmy Haslam's Knoxville-based company is expected to spend $72 million to settle a federal class action action lawsuit over alleged fuel rebate fraud.
A proposed settlement deal in a class action lawsuit filed by truckers against Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and his company is falling apart.
Browns owner Jimmy Haslam quietly named one of four University of Tennessee's "distinguished alumni."
Tuesday is a big day for trucking companies suing Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and Pilot Flying J as deadline looms in huge class-action lawsuit.
A new lawsuit alleges that the president of Pilot Flying J told an Illinois trucking company that Pilot could not help it with any rebate discrepancies after the company said its fuel deal wasn't in writing.
Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and Pilot Flying J CEO called the issues surrounding his company a very humbling, embarrassing time for himself, family and Pilot Flying J.
A federal judge is being asked to delay scheduling a sentencing date for seven former Pilot Flying J employees who have entered guilty pleas for their role in an alleged scheme that cheated trucking companies across the country.
After federal agents raided the headquarters of Pilot Flying J on April 15, seeking evidence of fuel rebate fraud, it didn't take long for Barrett to be approached about making a case against the company.
The founder of embattled truck-stop chain Pilot Flying J has given his first detailed remarks about the events surrounding a government raid of the Knoxville-based company.