Administrators Charged for Holding Freight Hostage
Negotiations are common in the trucking industry, with carriers, brokers, and receivers working out deals to benefit everyone involved. However, two people are now facing prison time after they created a scheme to defraud shipping brokers.
Melinda Campbell, a co-owner of various trucking companies, was convicted alongside Bryan Napier, a dispatcher from one of the same companies, of holding freight hostage. After agreeing with brokers on terms before hauling loads, the two began demanding additional money before the delivery was completed.
Brokers filed complaints against the two, but they were found to be changing the names of companies in order to continue their scheme. The scheme was perpetrated between late 2010 and early 2012.
Campbell was convicted on five counts of wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit Hobbs Act extortion. She was sentenced to 56 months in prison and 36 months of supervised release. Napier pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and was sentenced to 33 months in prison and a year of supervised release.