INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Seven people and three corporations were charged with scheming to defraud taxpayers, consumers, and investors of tens of millions of dollars, U.S. Attorney Joseph Hogsett said Wednesday.
The charges center around E-Biofuels, a Middletown company.
The 88 counts included in three charging documents include allegations of conspiracy, wire fraud, false tax claims, false statements under the Clean Air Act, obstruction of justice, money laundering and securities fraud.
The indictment said that beginning in 2009 and continuing thru May 2012, the defendants fraudulently sold more than 35 million gallons of what’s called RIN-Stripped B-99 biofuel to unwitting customers who paid an inflated price, thinking they were buying more valuable B-100 with RINs and an available tax credit.
Authorities claim the company conspired with two New Jersey corporations in the alleged scheme.
In 2010, the Justice Department said E-Biofuels was purchased by Imperial Petroleum, a publicly-traded company based in Evansville.
The government alleges the patent company's then CEO knew about the alleged scheme and hid it from investors, shareholders and outside auditors.
"These people believed that they and their businesses were entitled to a free ride on the back of unsuspecting customers and taxpayers," said U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett. "We all stand here today to tell you no. No to the fraud. No to the lies. No to the culture of corruption that represents the opposite of everything we in Indiana stand for when we refer to Hoosier values."
If convicted, defendants face potential prison time and fines.
Attempts to reach them Wednesday were unsuccessful.
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