DTNA is recalling 8,747 model year 2012 Freightliner Cascadia and Western Star 4900 vehicles manufactured from Dec. 22, 2011, through Feb. 23 because the vehicles may be equipped with driver’s seat bases that may have out-of-specification welds that allow the seat to buckle unexpectedly. DTNA says an unexpected movement of the seat could affect vehicle control and visibility.
DTNA will notify owners, and vehicles will have replacement components installed for free. The recall is expected to begin this month; owners can contact DTNA at (800) 547-0712 and specify campaign number FL-624.
DTNA also is recalling 1,046 model year 2012 Freightliner Business Class M2 and Cascadia vehicles manufactured from Jan. 20 through Feb. 17 because the vehicles may have been assembled with a steering wheel nut that may not provide the clamp load required to fully seat the steering wheel on the steering shaft. DTNA will notify owners, and affected vehicles will have a new steering wheel nut installed for free. The safety recall is expected to begin this month; owners can contact DTNA at (800) 547-0712 and specify campaign number FL-623.
— Linda Longton
Broker sentenced for defrauding carriers
A California broker who continued defrauding carriers even after being indicted for it has been sentenced to 10 years and 10 months in prison.
On March 28, U.S. District Judge Lawrence K. Karlton of the state’s Eastern District delivered the sentence to Kulwant Singh Gill, 53, and ordered him to pay $443,388 in restitution to his victims.
The Antelope resident owned and operated companies authorized to transport freight and to broker interstate loads, according to a federal justice department release. During 2004 and 2005, Gill applied for motor carrier broker licenses using false names, Social Security numbers and driver’s license number.
He used Internet load boards to find freight and would offer to transport loads for a fixed price. Gill then would repost the loads on the same website or other sites, acting as a broker seeking another company willing to transport it.
In more than 100 instances, Gill allowed trucking companies to make the deliveries and received payment from the original brokers, who believed Gill had completed the deliveries himself. He then would refuse to pay the carriers that actually transported the freight.
A grand jury originally indicted Gill in 2006, but he continued the scheme during pretrial release, which led to the 2008 indictment. He pleaded guilty in 2009 to charges involving the scheme in two separate indictments. In total, Gill was convicted on eight counts of wire fraud and five counts of making false statements to a government agency.
The court also ordered Gill to enter a 500-hour Bureau of Prisons substance abuse treatment program and to be placed on 36 months probation following completion of his sentence.
— Jill Dunn
THE U.S. HOUSE introduced legislation in March that would repeal the 12 percent excise tax on new truck and trailer purchases and replace it with a 6.4 cents per gallon increase in diesel fuel. The Heavy Truck Tax Fairness Act was designed to help Congress find new revenue sources to meet infrastructure needs, says the bill’s co-sponsor, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.).
Third Mexican carrier gains authority
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has granted operating authority to a third Mexican carrier and has filed its final brief in ongoing litigation over its cross-border pilot program.