Pilot hires ā€˜independent counselā€™ to investigate fraud accusations

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Updated May 9, 2013

pilot signFollowing Pilot Flying J CEO Jimmy Haslamā€™s April 22 statement that the company planned to hire a special independent investigator to ā€œoversee and validateā€ internal inquiries related to an investigation by the FBI, Pilot released a statement this week announcing it has hired Reid Weingarten to fill that role.

Pilot says Weingarten will ā€œlead, oversee and validate an internal investigationā€ of the recent federal allegations that Pilot systematically and intentionally defrauded customers out of tens of millions of dollars of fuel rebates.

Weingarten is an attorney with Steptoe & Johnson LLP and has worked with high-profile cases in the past, Pilot says. Heā€™ll be working alongside Brad Martin, chairman of private investment firm RBM Venture Company, who Pilotā€™s board has named head of a special committee assigned to work with Weingarten.

In addition to hiring an ā€œindependent special counsel,ā€ Haslam also April 22 said the company ā€” as steps toward rectifying some of the allegations ā€” is in the process of auditing all 3,300 of its contracts with customers, ending manual rebate calculation practices, hiring a Chief Compliance Officer and placing diesel salespersons on leave.