A federal grand jury has indicted the owner of a Georgia-based motor carrier company for two counts of making false statements and one count of conspiracy to continue operations after imposition of an out-of-service order.
The defendant, Devasko Dewayne Lewis, 34, of Lowndes County, GA, was indicted May 16 by a grand jury in U.S. District Court in Macon. The charges were announced via press release from U.S. Attorney Michael J. Moore’s office.
According to the indictment, Lewis and his prior company, Lewis Trucking, was the subject of an Oct. 6, 2008, imminent hazard operations out-of-service order issued by the Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The order remains in effect today. The charging documents allege Lewis violated the order by “continuing to operate commercial motor vehicles and concealing his true involvement by filing the applications for Department of Transportation motor carrier numbers under names other than his own.”
If convicted, Lewis faces up to five years imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,000, and up to three years supervised release on each of the false statement counts. The conspiracy charge carries a maximum penalty of one year imprisonment, a fine of up to $25,000 or both.
On or about Oct. 3, 2008, FMCSA conducted a compliance review of Lewis Trucking following a fatality accident, the charging document states. As a result of the review, an OOS order was issued, which has not been terminated or otherwise revised to this day.
On or about July 25, 2011, Lewis is alleged to have formed DDL Transport LLC, which by September of 2011 had received 129 cited violations in five roadside inspections, was also ordered out of service. That order has also never been terminated.
The false statement charges stem from two instances in March, in which Lewis is accused of making false statements in an application for a DOT number, specifically that he failed to identify himself as the operator of Eagle Transport.
Three other associates with Eagle Transport – Corey D. Daniels, Calvin Outlaw Jr., and Lacey Lewis – are also charged with conspiracy. Daniels is also charged with one count of false statement in which he is alleged to have stated he was the owner of Eagle Transport, and failed to identify Lewis as an owner.
The conspiracy charge covers the period of March 3, 2012, to at least January 23, 2013, in which the four defendants are accused of operating commercial motor vehicles when the defendants were precluded from doing so per the previous OOS orders. The group obtained DOT numbers without disclosing Lewis’ involvement in the company.
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