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Gender: Male
Hometown: Texas
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Current location: Red Hell Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
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About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Granite Bay Man Sentenced For Multi-Million Dollar Product Substitution Fraud On Federal Government

Granite Bay Man Sentenced For Multi-Million Dollar Product Substitution Fraud On Federal Government Agencies

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller sentenced Jim A. Meron, 54, of Granite Bay, today to 33 months in prison and three years of supervised release on two counts of wire fraud arising out of a government-procurement fraud scheme, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced. As part of the sentence, the Court ordered Meron to pay restitution of $1,622,729.13 to dozens of victims. The Court also entered a final order forfeiting more than $1.7 million in assets seized during the investigation of Meron’s crimes.

According to court documents, between May 2011 and July 2017, Meron used two office supply businesses he operated to defraud federal government agencies out of as much as $3.5 million, in thousands of transactions, by substituting and delivering cheaper, generic versions of expensive, name-brand products his customers ordered, and pocketing the price difference.

Meron’s companies, WOW Imaging Products LLC and Time Enterprises LLC, contracted to sell office supplies to federal agencies through two web-based government sales portals, GSA Advantage, operated by the General Services Administration, and DOD EMall, operated by the Department of Defense. After Meron received payments for the premium products his customers ordered, he obtained compatible products from his suppliers that cost him a fraction of what his customer paid for the brand-name products they ordered. Meron then substituted and delivered those cheaper products for the more expensive products his customers ordered, and retained the difference in cost. Over time, Meron extended his substitution scheme to nearly all orders for those name-brand products, and never intended to deliver what his customers ordered.

This case is the product of an investigation by the General Services Administration Office of Inspector General and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service. Assistant U.S. Attorneys André M. Espinosa and Kevin Khasigian are prosecuting the case.


Ex-Gov. Bentley settles fired official's lawsuit

MONTGOMERY — Former Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley, who resigned amid a scandal, has reached a settlement agreement to end a wrongful dismissal lawsuit filed by his one-time law enforcement secretary who had publicly accused the governor of having an affair with an aide, lawyers confirmed Thursday.

Former Law Enforcement Secretary Spencer Collier sued Bentley in 2016 arguing the governor wrongfully fired him and then tried to discredit him with statements and a sham state investigation accusing him of misusing office resources.

Lawyers for Collier and Bentley both confirmed the settlement agreement Thursday. Kenny Mendelsohn, an attorney for Collier, said the terms are confidential.

Collier said Thursday that he considered the settlement “another sign of vindication,” along with a previous review by the attorney general’s office that found he did nothing wrong.

Read more: https://www.tuscaloosanews.com/news/20190613/ex-gov-bentley-settles-fired-officials-lawsuit

Planned Parenthood builds Alabama clinic despite abortion law

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Planned Parenthood is building the stage for another possible fight over abortion in Alabama: a large women's clinic that's under construction despite the state's passage of a near-total ban on abortions.

Located beside an interstate highway in downtown Birmingham, the 10,000-square-foot structure is now nothing but a steel frame and roof. Workers under the constant watch of security guards appear to be installing electrical wiring, plus heating and cooling units.

The new facility could be complete around November, which is the same time the new state law will take effect unless blocked by courts. Abortion critics vow to oppose the opening, but a spokeswoman for the women's health organization said neither the new law nor opponents were a factor in the project.

"We are a doctor that Birmingham has counted on for decades, and we are committed to continuing to provide that care," said Barbara Ann Luttrell, a spokeswoman for the Atlanta-based Planned Parenthood Southeast.

Read more: https://www.dothaneagle.com/news/state_region/planned-parenthood-builds-ala-clinic-despite-abortion-law/article_5be4a546-c932-5464-8568-e0f7492c68c1.html

Judge dismisses suit by Alabama woman claiming Trump forcibly kissed her

A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit from an Alabama woman who claimed President Donald Trump kissed her against her will while she worked for his campaign.

Alva Johnson claimed then-candidate Trump “forcibly kissed” her during a 2016 campaign stop in Tampa, Florida. Johnson, who served as Trump’s director of outreach to coalitions for Alabama, also claimed the campaign engaged in pay discrimination against female and African-American employees.

U.S. District Court Judge William Jung said Johnson’s complaint centered too much on political attacks, according to a report in Politico.

“As currently stated, the Complaint presents a political lawsuit, not a tort and wages lawsuit,” Jung wrote. “Plaintiff will receive a fair day in court, but the Court will try a tort and wages dispute—not a political one. If Plaintiff wishes to make a political statement or bring a claim for political purposes, this is not the forum.”

Read more: https://www.al.com/news/2019/06/judge-dismisses-suit-by-alabama-woman-claiming-trump-forcibly-kissed-her.html

Mobile towing companies face severe penalties in fraud investigation

You’ve just wrecked your car and a Mobile police officer arranges for your vehicle to be towed, picking a towing company off a list kept by the department.

Pretty convenient, right? The company arrives and tows your car to its yard, and you even get to ride shotgun in the front cab. Fun.

That tow should cost $125 plus a daily fee of about $20 per day storage for regular vehicles, per Mobile City ordnance laws. But what do you care, an insurance company is picking up the tab.

Well, guess what? A small number of towing firms have allegedly been charging insurance companies far beyond the $125 fee, according to police.

Read more: https://www.al.com/news/2019/06/mobile-towing-companies-could-face-severe-penalties-as-part-of-insurance-fraud-investigation.html

Jury awards $5 million to family in Jackson Hospital case

A jury last week awarded $5 million to the estate of a deceased woman as part of a verdict in a lawsuit against Montgomery’s Jackson Hospital.

The jury in Montgomery County Circuit Court deliberated about one hour and 45 minutes Friday before finding against the hospital in the case for the family of Alice Mae Reed.

Brett Turnbull of the Turnbull Law Firm and Andrew Moak of Alexander Shunnarah Personal Injury Lawyers worked the case for the plaintiffs.

The suit, filed back in October 2015, asserted that Reed was admitted to Jackson Hospital in August 2015. Her family said that the hospital failed to properly turn and reposition her in bed, causing her to contract a large and intense pressure ulcer on her lower back and upper left arm. According to the lawsuit, the ulcer caused her significant pain and suffering at the end of her life, as she remained largely bedridden. Reed died on Nov. 3, 2015.

Read more: https://www.al.com/business/2019/06/jury-awards-5-million-to-family-in-jackson-hospital-case.html

Alabama Senate is rotten at the top

There is something terribly wrong when two influential senators can lie, cheat and defraud the people without retribution.

As the Scottish novelist Walter Scott wrote over 200 years ago, “O, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive!”

During the last Legislative Session, Republican State Sens. Greg Albritton and Arthur Orr moved to pass bills that seemed at their core to be intentionally deceptive.

Over the course of the 2019 Regular Session, Orr introduced legislation that would have raided the nascent gas tax fund while Albritton sponsored a bill to gut the state’s ethics laws and another one to create a lottery that was a corrupt bargain from the beginning.

Read more: https://www.alreporter.com/2019/06/17/opinion-alabama-senate-is-rotten-at-the-top/

Pickens County Sheriff to plead guilty to wire fraud and tax charges

Friday a federal indictment was unsealed against Pickens County Sheriff David Eugene Abston (R). Also that same day a plea agreement was filed and Abston resigned as Sheriff after forty years in law enforcement.

The federal indictments for wire fraud and filing false tax returns were announced U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town, FBI Special Agent in Charge Johnnie Sharp, Jr. and IRS-Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Thomas J. Holloman.

According to the plea agreement, the defendant has agreed to plead guilty to one count of wire fraud and one count of filing a false tax return. The nine-count indictment filed in U.S. District Court charges Pickens Sheriff Abston with seven counts of wire fraud and two counts of filing a false tax return.

“A sitting county sheriff is alleged to have defrauded a food bank and a church for his personal gain at the expense of the underprivileged that the food bank serves,” Town said. “Our office will continue to aggressively pursue and prosecute public officials who violate the public trust for their own personal gain.”

Read more: https://www.alreporter.com/2019/06/14/pickens-county-sheriff-to-plead-guilty-to-wire-fraud-and-tax-charges/

Figures drops out of Alabama Democratic Party chair race; two will challenge Worley

State Sen. Vivian Figures won’t be the next chairperson of the Alabama Democratic Party.

Figures announced on Friday that she was dropping out of the race to potentially replace Nancy Worley, who has been the party chair since 2013.

“It is critical to have a chairman of the State Democratic Party who can serve in that capacity on a full-time basis,” Figures said in a statement announcing her decision. “After careful consideration, I feel that it is imperative that my voice and focus remain in the Senate and Alabama Legislature.”

Figures’ announcement is the latest twist in an odd and contentious fight to wrestle control of the floundering Alabama Democratic Party away from Worley and her closest ally, Alabama Democratic Conference chairman Joe Reed.

Read more: https://www.alreporter.com/2019/06/17/figures-drops-out-of-adp-chair-race-two-will-challenge-worley/

Jones urges placement of a new Space Command headquarters in Huntsville

Sen. Doug Jones sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan urging the Department of Defense to select Huntsville as a new location for the U.S. Space Command headquarters.

The department is currently determining where the U.S. Space Command will be headquartered. They recently conducted site surveys at Redstone Arsenal, a U.S. Army post near Huntsville.

“The Huntsville, Alabama area clearly fulfills – and surpasses – all of the criteria for Space Command Headquarters,” Jones said. “The state of Alabama would welcome Space Command to join Redstone’s renowned and first-rate installation. I strongly recommend the selection of Huntsville as headquarters for Space Command.”

Jones recently meet with Shanahan in Washington D.C. before sending this letter pushing Redstone Arsenal as a potential new headquarters.

Read more: https://www.alreporter.com/2019/06/17/jones-urges-placement-of-new-new-space-command-headquarters-in-huntsville/
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