Former Arrow Trucking head indicted on fraud charges tied to company’s demise

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Photo credit: Tulsa WorldPhoto credit: Tulsa World

The former president and CEO of Arrow Trucking was indicted by a Grand Jury Dec. 1 on charges stemming from his use of company money for personal expenses like weddings, luxury automobiles and credit card payments and from bilking creditor Transportation Alliance Bank out of roughly $15 million.

James D. Pielsticker headed the company until its December 2009 demise, when it suddenly closed its doors without notice and left drivers and cargo stranded nationwide.

He was indicted on 23 counts of various fraud and conspiracy.

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.

Arrow in 2011 agreed to pay $2.9 million in wage claims stemming from its sudden closure.