Former Arrow Trucking CFO to join Pielsticker in prison on fraud charges

By Greg Grisolano, Land Line associate editor | Monday, October 19, 2015

The former chief financial officer of Arrow Trucking company was sentenced to 35 months in prison for his role in a scheme to commit bank and tax fraud, according to a news release from the U.S. Justice department.

The defendant, Jonathan Leland Moore, 38, of Waxahachi, Texas, was sentenced on Oct. 16 by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Gregory K. Frizzell of the Northern District of Oklahoma. Moore had previously pleaded guilty on Dec. 4, 2014, to one count of a dual-object conspiracy to commit bank fraud and to defraud the United States.

Moore conspired with former Arrow Trucking CEO James Douglas Pielsticker, 47, by failing to account for and pay federal withholding taxes on behalf of Arrow Trucking Company and by making payments to Pielsticker outside the payroll system. Pielsticker was sentenced to more than seven years in prison on fraud and tax evasion charges earlier this month, thanks in part to Moore’s cooperation with investigators and testimony during Pielsticker’s sentencing hearing last week. On Oct. 9, Pielsticker was sentenced to serve seven and one-half years in prison.

Judge Frizzell sentenced Moore to serve three years of supervised release following his prison term and ordered him to pay $21,026,682.03 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Transportation Alliance Bank (TAB), per the Justice Department release.

According to the plea agreement and other court records, in 2009, Moore, Pielsticker and others withheld Arrow Trucking Company employees’ federal income tax withholdings, Medicare and Social Security taxes, but did not report or pay over these taxes to the IRS. Instead, the conspirators used the money to pay for Pielsticker’s personal expenses, and submitted fraudulent invoices to TAB to induce the bank to pay funds to Arrow Trucking Company that were not warranted. In total, the conspiracy caused a loss to the United States totaling more than $9.562 million, prosecutors claimed.

During the hearing, Moore testified that Pielsticker instructed him and Joseph Mowry, former secretary and general counsel, to create a fraudulent billing scheme by inflating invoices to defraud TAB out of millions. Mowry, who was never charged, died of natural causes at his home in 2011.

In his testimony, Moore said Pielsticker instructed him to pay his own personal bills first before company expenses. According to the Tulsa World, Moore said Pielsticker said “f--- the drivers and f--- fuel” even though the company was clearly in serious financial trouble. 

Despite the company’s dire financial situation leading up to its collapse in December 2009, investigators claim company money was used to pay for Pielsticker’s wedding, his Bentley and Maserati cars. Company money was also used to lease a private jet for personal trips and vacations, among other personal bills.

In February, Pielsticker pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and one count of tax evasion after being indicted on 23 counts by a grand jury in December 2014.

Former Arrow Trucking drivers and employees have been waiting nearly six years for Pielsticker to see the inside of a prison cell. Pielsticker was at the helm of Arrow Trucking when the “Nightmare before Christmas” occurred. Hundreds of truck drivers were left stranded all over the country, many under loads, with no working fuel cards or paychecks just three days before Christmas in 2009. Meanwhile, former Arrow employees, as well as many in the trucking industry, banded together to get the stranded drivers home.

Contributing writer Clarissa Hawes contributed to this report.

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