Fairley Cisco, a businessman in Camden County, Ga., has been indicted by a federal grand jury along with his nephew, a former son-in-law and two others on charges of a multi-million dollar fuel fraud scheme and a bribery conspiracy, The Florida Times-Union reported Friday.
The men are accused of deliberately miscalibrating fuel pumps at Cisco’s three gas stations along Interstate 95 in Camden County, Ga., thereby cheating customers out of millions of dollars from 1995 through March 2008.
“The indictment alleges that in the years 2005 and 2006 alone, customers of the Cisco stations were defrauded out of at least $7 million,” Acting U.S. Attorney Joseph Newman told the Florida-Times Union.
As a result of the rigging, customers received less fuel than they paid for or received regular unleaded when they paid for premium or middle grade gasoline, according to the indictment.
The scheme also allegedly included a conspiracy to bribe inspectors from the Georgia Department of Agriculture who were responsible for making the pumps were calibrated and operating properly.
The 17-count indictment also alleges that a substitute fuel was sold as BP brand unleaded gasoline at the stations, violating the company’s trademark.
All three stations of the stations involved in the indictment have been closed.
The conspiracy count is punishable by up to five years in federal prison, while each of the 15 mail and wire fraud charges listed in the indictment are punishable by up to 20 years, and the trademark infringement count is punishable by up to a 10-year prison term. Each count also is punishable by fines.