The former president and CEO of the now defunct Arrow Trucking was indicted last week on 23 counts of various types of fraud and tax evasion — all of which were tied to the mismanagement and schemes that played parts in the company’s demise.
The Dec. 1 indictment of James Douglas Pielsticker, head of Arrow until December 2009, stems from alleged fraudulent and inflated invoices sent to creditor Transportation Alliance Bank and from using Arrow accounts to pay for personal expenses such as his wedding, a Porsche, a Bentley, a Maserati, his personal credit cards and deposits to his wife’s bank account.
Prosecutors allege that Pielsticker would send invoices that were knowingly and fraudulently inflated — and sometimes would even have Arrow employees pretend to be Arrow customers in phone calls with Transportation Alliance Bank — and the bank would pay the excessive invoices pursuant to an agreement between the two companies.
Court documents reveal that Pielsticker pocketed about $15 million in the scheme.
Prosecutors allege Pielsticker fraudulently obtained another roughly $5 million from tax evasion, either from not reporting income he earned or by not paying the federal government payroll withholdings from Arrow employee paychecks.
Money withheld from employees’ paychecks — meant to go toward federal income taxes, Medicare and Social Security taxes — were not deposited and instead kept by Pielsticker, prosecutors allege.
He also failed to pay income taxes for income received over a several-year period, the court documents allege.
Arrow shut down suddenly and without notice in December 2009, leaving its drivers, trucks and freight stranded nationwide. FMCSA a week later made an emergency order directing the carrier to remove its equipment and cargo to safe places or to face penalties. Arrow then filed for bankruptcy.
A court later approved $2.9 million in wage claims stemming from its closure.