Four local men have been indicted on six counts of mail fraud and one count of conspiracy in connection with a $2.6 million fraud scheme. Two of them are the owners of Penwell Knights Raceway. The FBI said Gary Gardenhire, 36, is the mastermind behind the scheme. According to the FBI, Gardenhire’s brother, 34-year-old Jerrod Gardenhire was his right-hand man. The pair allegedly stole millions from their former employer The Hose Connection Inc. Here’s how they allegedly did it.
inventory from the victim company, but siphoning thee funds from the sales to a
shell company they had set up in their own names," said Special FBI Agent
Matt Espenshade of the
But the FBI said the Gardenhire brothers couldn't have successfully carried out the scheme without 37-year-old Cody Eckel and 32-year-old Fred Foster.
"The other two individuals would buy the products from the victim company and they were normal customers of that company. However they were being provided kickbacks," explained Espenshade.
The Gardenhire brothers supposedly began defrauding their employer in 2007, but their employer didn’t find out what was happening until last year. The FBI said the company discovered the scheme through an auditing process. The two brothers were fired after their scam came to light.
Right now, the gates of their race track are locked. The FBI said the property still belongs to the Gardenhire brothers and that they haven’t asked them to close it. They also said they are investigating whether or not the brothers used any of the money they allegedly stole to upgrade the track; they’re also trying to figure out how much the property is worth.
There is a possibility the FBI will be seizing the property.