MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A 67-year-old Inver Grove Heights man has been sentenced to 15 months in prison on one count of wire fraud for defrauding contracted truck drivers out of more than $120,000.
Marlon Louis Danner, who is the operator of Danner, Inc., and Bull Dog Leasing, Inc., admitted to misleading the truck drivers into returning to him settlement funds they received pursuant to an agreement between him and the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT).
In 2008 and 2009, he supplied drivers for the Minnesota Highway 120-Century Avenue reconstruction project, which was partially funded with federal funds. Danner was required to pay a mandated wage rate to the drivers, but authorities discovered he had underpaid 27 of his drivers.
In a settlement, he was to issue company checks totaling more than $185,000 to the drivers, and they were mailed to the drivers on March 2, 2010. On Feb. 27, 2010, however, he telephoned many of the drivers and either implicitly or explicitly instructed them to return the settlement funds to him upon their receipt of them. He told them that MnDOT had made a mistake and the funds were not theirs to keep.
By June 3, 2010, Danner had received more than $120,000.
In addition to prison time, Danner was ordered to pay a $50,000 fine and $125,000 in restitution.