Federal judge to shut down Pilot Flying J trial until Jan. 8

Image via facebook.com/pilottravelcenters

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) – A federal judge is setting a monthlong break in the fraud trial of former executives and sales representatives at the truck stop chain controlled by the family of Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam.

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports U.S. District Judge Curtis Collier announced that after Thursday’s proceedings, the trial will be put on hold until Jan. 8.

Jimmy Haslam, the CEO of Pilot Flying J, has not been charged with any wrongdoing and has said he had no prior knowledge of the fraud scheme before federal agents raided on the company’s headquarters in 2013.

Fourteen members of the Pilot sales department have pleaded guilty, and the company has paid an $85 million settlement to scammed customers and a $92 million penalty to the government.

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