An Arkansas man who allegedly
embezzled more than $100,000 from a trucking company was arrested Nov. 8 on
suspicion of theft by deception. An official at the company reportedly became
suspicious after an unusually large number of claims had been filed.
Joe Pratt, of Fort Smith,
is suspected of defrauding USA Truck, of Van Buren, AR, where he was employed
as director of pricing, by filing bogus claims for damaged merchandise, according
to published reports. Since April 1999, Pratt is suspected of filing about
30 false claims.
Police believe Pratt
filed some of the bogus claims in the names of real companies and some in
the name of a fictitious company. After the claims were approved, Pratt would
alter the claim forms to show the name of the fictitious company, and when
checks were issued to the phony company, Pratt allegedly pocketed them. The
money has not been recovered.