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Haslam will address Pilot Flying J investigation at trucking company seminar

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As Browns owner Jimmy Haslam deals with the fallout from a federal investigation that resulted in a surprise raid of Pilot Flying J headquarters nearly four weeks ago, he must balance not saying things that will compromise his legal interests with saying enough to help his business interests.

On Thursday, the pendulum will swing toward the latter, when Haslam speaks at a trucking company seminar in Indianapolis.  The crowd could be a little hostile, given that Pilot Flying J allegedly preyed on trucking companies deemed sufficiently unsophisticated to spot that they were being shorted financially.

“We were invited and considered it a good opportunity to communicate with the trucking industry,” Pilot Flying J spokesman Alan Carmichael told the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Making the opportunity even better for Haslam is that he’ll speak for 20-25 minutes and then answer previously submitted questions, allowing Haslam (and his lawyers) to hand-pick the topics to be addressed and to script the things Haslam will say.

“We don’t want to put anyone in the position of having to answer questions off the cuff, especially when they’re under a federal investigation,” said Gregory Feary, the president of the law firm hosting the seminar.

It’s a fair point, because anything Haslam says can and will be used against him by the feds, if/when he or anyone else is prosecuted for customer rebate/discount fraud.  So anything and everything he says will be determined based on what impact, if any, it will have on the federal investigation.

Ultimately, then, a desire to stay out of jail trumps the desire to remain in business.

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17 Responses to “Haslam will address Pilot Flying J investigation at trucking company seminar”
  1. tjg25 says: May 11, 2013 12:50 PM

    I’m sure he’ll be honest and forthcoming. Lol.

  2. officialgame says: May 11, 2013 12:55 PM

    Do you need a coupon to attend?

  3. jonesjack says: May 11, 2013 1:21 PM

    Talking about this publicly is incredibly risky. Justice and Treasury don’t need any extra advantages in an investigation.

  4. larrydavid7000 says: May 11, 2013 2:00 PM


  5. zeke2517 says: May 11, 2013 2:00 PM

    I just clicked on this because “Haslam will address Pilot Flying J investigation at trucking company seminar” doesn’t make any sense. Turns out it’s about the Browns. I’m going to go do something else now.

  6. davidrn2341 says: May 11, 2013 2:17 PM

    Really, who cares? It’s all going to be fluff and BS anyway. Just trying to save a little face and do some damage control as I am sure gas sales are down.

  7. guyljr says: May 11, 2013 2:25 PM

    There is a Pilot a block away from my house. They have the same ammount of buisiness as they always had. This will not bankrupt them and only football fanatics even know about it.

  8. oldcracker says: May 11, 2013 2:25 PM

    Exactly how is this football news?

    If Haslam goes broke and can’t pay Lerner, doesn’t this just mean a return to Dandy Randy?
    I don’t think it means a return to Holmgren, Heckert, and Fumblenutz…does it?

    When is the last time we saw an article about the owner of the Seahawks and Microsoft’s fiscal status? How about Kraft and the health of Remington Shavers?

    Let’s keep try to keep this site on target with football issues.

  9. guyljr says: May 11, 2013 2:26 PM

    “I just clicked on this because “Haslam will address Pilot Flying J investigation at trucking company seminar” doesn’t make any sense. Turns out it’s about the Browns. I’m going to go do something else now.”

    But Ill take the time to comment first.

  10. 6ball says: May 11, 2013 2:51 PM


    What possesses a millionaire to be involved in any type of financial misconduct? If it’s not the money, then why?


  11. istateyourname says: May 11, 2013 3:05 PM

    “What possesses a millionaire to be involved in any type of financial misconduct? If it’s not the money, then why?”

    Because a poor man wants to be rich and a rich man wants to be king and a king ain’t satisfied until he rules everything, that’s why.

  12. abninf says: May 11, 2013 3:14 PM

    That dude just looks fishy. I thought that the first time I saw his face.

  13. steelerberd says: May 11, 2013 3:58 PM

    Browns fans thought when Jimmy Haslam bought the Clowns their franchise was going to mimmick the “Steelers Way!” Their excitement has turned to jeers after a piss poor draft,and a shady owner that can’t hold a candle to the Rooney’s. Cleveland fans hate the Steelers but they envy us. They try to poach our players, they got an owner that was a minority owner for the Steelers. It doesn’t matter how hard you Clowns try you will never been in the same class as the Steelers or Steeler fans. The Curse continues! Art Modell for Hall of Fame.

  14. padraighansen says: May 11, 2013 5:51 PM

    Interesting. The firm – and attorney – that are putting this seminar on also do a lot of work regarding independent contractors, especially in the transportation industry. Many truck drivers are actually owner/operators (independent contractors) that lease on to large trucking companies, which in turn put together fuel contracts with companies like Pilot or Love’s. The ones hurt the most from this scam will be those independent contractors, and I can see many, if not most, of the fuel contracts being voided. This will not end financially well for Haslam or Pilot.

  15. sammysam4242 says: May 11, 2013 6:43 PM

    Suddenly in the summer of 2007, Dr. Richard Rydze’s long ties with the Pittsburgh Steelers were cut. His split with the team came four months after news reports identified him as an online buyer of nearly $1 million worth of human growth hormone (HGH), a performance-enhancing drug banned by the NFL. For Mike Fish’s examination of the connections between the doctor’s departure from the Steelers and his passion for the off-label use of HGH to treat tendon and ligament injuries, click here.

  16. sammysam4242 says: May 11, 2013 6:44 PM


  17. 55yrbrownsfan says: May 12, 2013 7:44 AM

    He’ll say “candidly” alot.

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