Two Pilot Flying J sales employees plead guilty - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Two Pilot Flying J sales employees plead guilty

NFL legend Jim Brown and Browns owner Jimmy Haslam NFL legend Jim Brown and Browns owner Jimmy Haslam
(WOIO) -

The FBI and IRS raided Jimmy Haslam's Pilot Flying J headquarters in Knoxville, Tennessee in April. He's accused of rebate fraud.

And while the Cleveland Browns owner was introducing NFL legend Jim Brown as his team's new special adviser -- 19 Action News Reporter Scott Taylor confirmed that two of his sales employees were pleading guilty to federal conspiracy charges.

51 year old Arnold Ralenkotter and 27 year old Ashley Smith Judd are the first employee's of Haslam's company to plead guilty in connection with claims of rebate fraud.

Ralenkotter is the northeast regional sales manager for pilot Flying J and Judd is a regional account rep. He pled guilty to approving reduced rebate checks to customers.

The FEDS say Judd was asked by a customer about an issue with a rebate amount and she said it was a lapse in the numbers.

Jim Brown meantime, is continuing to stand behind Jimmy Haslam -- just like he told a reporter when the FBI first raided Pilot Flying J. 

"That's my guy. That's my guy.  I have had a short relationship with him but I believe in him and I stand behind him," said Jim Brown.

Pilot Flying J released the following statement Wednesday:

"The statements released by the federal court today do not come as a surprise given what we've been learning in our own internal investigations, but are nonetheless disappointing. We want to assure our customers that we are taking every step to correct any wrongdoing that has occurred and to make certain that it does not happen again."

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