Repeat out-of-service violator indicted in federal court

Updated May 31, 2013

A federal court has indicted a trucking company owner who repeatedly violated an imminent hazard operations out-of-service order.

On May 16, a Macon, Ga. U.S. district court indicted Devasko Dewayne Lewis, 34, of Lowndes County, for false statements and conspiracy to operate despite the order.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration had issued the imminent hazard out-of-service order to Lewis after a 2008 compliance review indicated serious violations. Agency officials conducted the review soon after a company truck, transporting lumber on U.S. 82 in Alabama, collided head on with an Alabama Department of Corrections van.

Lewis’ company driver had attempted to pass another truck in a no-passing zone, according to court records. The van driver, an ADOC employee and his six passengers, who were applying for prison jobs, all died as a result of that accident.

But in 2011, Lewis formed a second company that the FMCSA placed under an imminent hazard out-of-service order. In May 2012, Lewis pleaded guilty to violating the order and was sentenced to six months incarceration and a year of supervised release.

Lewis then violated orders to not to be involved in operations of any trucking company during supervised release, according to the U.S. attorney’s office. He obtained DOT numbers for two new companies using the identity of friends. Lewis did not reveal his involvement as owner-operator of the companies to the agency.

After reporting to federal prison in November 2012, Lewis continued operating the companies with the assistance of the three accomplices. The Macon grand jury also indicted the three for false statements and conspiracy to operate under the provisions of an IHO.

If convicted for the false statements, Lewis’ sentence could include up to five years in prison and a $250,000.fine. Additionally, a conviction on the conspiracy count could include up to one year of incarceration, a $25,000.00 fine or both.