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For 3 Years, Scammers Ran Truckless Trucking Company

timothy posted about 6 years ago | from the trucker-in-the-middle dept.

Security 244

mikesd81 writes "Wired reports Nicholas Lakes and Viachelav Berkovich are charged with computer fraud [PDF] for a man-in-the-middle attack that allegedly let them run a profitable trucking company without the hassle of driving a truck. For over three years the Russian immigrants hacked a Department of Transportation website called, which maintains a list of licensed interstate trucking companies and brokers. They then went on forums where brokers advertise cargo in need of transportation and negotiate a deal, for example, to transport cargo from American Canyon, California, to Jessup, Maryland, for $3,500. But instead of transporting the load, they would outsource the job to another trucking company posing as the legitimate company whose identity they'd hijacked. They would then invoice the company and take the money. When the company that owned the actual truck tried to contact the company that needed the goods delivered, they found they knew nothing about it. Over all they made nearly $500,000."

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Hmmm (5, Insightful)

TheLink (130905) | about 6 years ago | (#25472421)

Sounds a bit like the music industry to me.

When the time comes for the artists to get paid...

Re:Hmmm (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472505)

Nah, it's the fractional reserve banking system.

Wait... (5, Funny)

CaptainPatent (1087643) | about 6 years ago | (#25472431)

1)Start trucking company
2)... 3)Profit!

So this is actually a valid business model?!?

Re:Wait... (2, Interesting)

nomadic (141991) | about 6 years ago | (#25472519)

2) Subcontract the job out.

It's actually a very common business model, in this case it's improper because of all the computer hacking and lying.

Re:Wait... (5, Informative)

rugatero (1292060) | about 6 years ago | (#25472615)

It's improper because they didn't pay the damn subcontractors. It's incredible that they sustained it for three years.

Re:Wait... (4, Interesting)

dnoyeb (547705) | about 6 years ago | (#25472637)

They were not subcontractors. The criminals were imitating contractors and taking money in their name. When the real contractors showed up, the goods were there, but the money had been paid to someone else.

Re:Wait... (5, Informative)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | about 6 years ago | (#25472823)


The criminals imitated a legitimate trucking company, bid on and won loads, then subcontracted the actual hauling out to a second trucking company. When the load was delivered, the criminals would pocket the money. When the subcontractor that did the actual hauling would contact the legitimate company to get paid, the company wouldn't know anything about it because said company was impersonated by the criminals.

The scam worked like this:
Criminals hack into and get the info of trucking company A.
They would then go on a load board and bid on and win a load from company B.
Then, as A they would contract trucking company C to haul the load for B
When the load was delivered, B would pay the criminals thinking they were paying A.
The criminals then disappear with the money.
Meanwhile company C would contact A to get paid for actually hauling the load and A would have no idea what C was talking about.

Got it?

Re:Wait... (5, Insightful)

inviolet (797804) | about 6 years ago | (#25473187)

Thanks for that explanation.

Has anyone noticed that these two zeebs didn't actually earn a very good living with this scam?

Two guys laboring for three years to produce ~$500,000... that is an annual salary of $83K apiece, which is good pay for a regular low-risk job but lousy pay for a high-risk situation like this one. And lo and behold the risk occurred and stung them both.

The more stories like this I hear about, the more I think that most criminals work too hard for their take, and ought to reconsider.

Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473395)

an annual salary of $83K apiece, which is good pay for a regular low-risk job

For Russian immigrants, this is a low-risk job!</tryingtobefunny>

Re:Wait... (5, Insightful)

billsnow (1334685) | about 6 years ago | (#25473471)

83K per year per person is pretty lucrative for small-time criminals. They don't pay any taxes. They live in their immigrant neighborhoods, which have a low cost of living (even in cities like brooklyn). There is no such thing as high-risk to immigrant criminals, except for deportation, of course. Pretty good scam, considering they didn't need a lot of people (no credit).

(didn't RTFA)

Re:Wait... (5, Insightful)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 6 years ago | (#25473501)

On the contrary, where can you find a job doing anything legal which nets you $83k after taxes and lets you (a) work from home (b) not bother to work when you don't want to and (c) only requires a few hours a month (which is all they probably did). If the 83k were taxable, it would put them in the top 23% of wage earners in the US, and if you account for taxes on top of their (untaxed) 83k (i.e. payroll and income), you're solidly in the top 15% in take-home.

Trust me, being a criminal is far less time intensive than a steady job at the same wage. Most of these guys would probably struggle to hold down a $22-30,000/yr service position in the "real world".

Besides, now it looks like they'll get free room and board for several years.

Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473547)

That 83,000 is tax free and probably requires working a lot less hours.

Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473717)

What the hell kind of job "regular low risk" job pays 83K? Where are you because I am moving to that market.

Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472879)

That's not quite right, from what I understand. Here's how I understand it:

On the forum, Joe Customer makes a deal with ABC Shipping to transport some goods. What Joe doesn't know is that ABC Shipping's account has been hijacked, so he's never really talked to ABC but instead Lakes and Berkovich. Lakes and Berkovich, posing as ABC, turn around and subcontract the job to XYZ Shipping. Joe pays the fake ABC and then XYZ performs the job. When XYZ tries to get their payment from the real ABC, they get a nasty surprise because ABC has never heard of Joe Customer or his shipment.

In this scenario, Lakes and Berkovich are the only criminals. XYZ are the victims.

Re:Wait... (4, Informative)

Zenaku (821866) | about 6 years ago | (#25472987)

You're incorrect. The criminals would replace the phone number of an approved contractor with their own number, and then pose as that company when the customer with goods to ship called them up to arrange a contract. They'd then turn around and, still posing as the legitimate trucking company, subcontract the job to someone else who would actually pickup the goods and deliver them.

Thus, the customer pays the criminals to move the goods, and the criminals get the subcontractor to do it, then they just don't pay the subcontractor. If the subcontractor wants to complain, he just ends up talking to the company that the criminals were impersonating, who has not been involved at all up to that point.

The "real contractors" never show up to ship anything -- they are just the "fall guy" who the customer and subcontractor both thought they were dealing with.

Re:Wait... (-1, Offtopic)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | about 6 years ago | (#25472733)

Only about as incredible as house price inflation over the last 10 years.

Re:Wait... (1)

Bandman (86149) | about 6 years ago | (#25472875)

I was wondering what made this illegal. My bandwidth providers do this all the damned time.

Re:Wait... (1)

gnick (1211984) | about 6 years ago | (#25473075)

If the people taking your checks never bother to pay the people actually providing you with bandwidth, that's a perfect analogy.

There are better explanations of the scenario than available in TFS both here [] and here [] .

Re:Wait... (1, Informative)

Toll_Free (1295136) | about 6 years ago | (#25473099)

There is no hacking. is a website set up by the Federal Motorcarrier Safety Administration for the use of people to check out companies.

Easy as pie, goto safersys, look at a company snapshot, and pick one to screw.

Seems anyone able to use Google or Yahoo search engines could be called a hacker.

The premise of the story is true. The story of hacking is bullshit.


Re:Wait... (4, Insightful)

mr_mischief (456295) | about 6 years ago | (#25473567)

The story of hacking isn't bullshit. They changed the contact info for the companies they were impersonating to numbers they controlled. It says so in TFA. The scam may have worked without that step, but according to the article that's what they did.

Also, it's funny that if they'd paid the subcontractor and kept the difference, they'd probably still be running the scam. They'd probably be able to rip off the brokers indefinitely if the trucking companies were happy with their pay and arrangements. It seems it was the angry trucking companies coming back on the brokers they thought hired them that caused this to break open.

A smaller, slower take could have given them a good steady side income for years longer. If the only crime was posing as some broker and using that broker's good name to garner business, they'd get light sentences even if they were caught. If they could have ramped up to where they were stealing 3% or 4% of every broker's business, they'd have been able to live very comfortably.

Re:Wait... (1)

ozbird (127571) | about 6 years ago | (#25473139)

4) Go to Jail; do not pass Go, do not collect $3500.

Re:Wait... (2, Funny)

MikeDirnt69 (1105185) | about 6 years ago | (#25472555)

1)Start trucking company 2)... 3)Profit! So this is actually a valid business model?!?

No, and you forgot the 4th step:
4) Get arrested!

Re:Wait... (1)

alexborges (313924) | about 6 years ago | (#25472821)


You mean:

4) Get arrested.... 500k dls and 4 years later.

Re:Wait... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472751)

1)Start trucking company
2)... 3)Profit!
So this is actually a valid business model?!?

Well, it worked for a couple of former Soviet Russians, but maybe not for you!

Re:Wait... (1)

kingsteve612 (1241114) | about 6 years ago | (#25472977)

lol at the underpants gnome reference.

Re:Wait... (1)

gnick (1211984) | about 6 years ago | (#25473121)

So that's what that is!

Now perhaps you can explain why people keep welcoming random overlords and telling me what happens in Soviet Russia?


Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473453)

You must be new here.
P.S. Don't be surprised when someone will respond to this post "No, I'm New Here".

Re:Wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473649)

Fuck you, three of my friends died being new here.

Re:Wait... EXACTLY. It took 3 years to shut down? (5, Insightful)

whoever57 (658626) | about 6 years ago | (#25473023)

This is just another example of how the FBI is failing the people of the USA. There is no way this should have taken 3 years to shut down.

It's not even an example where the FBI helped a company but would not help individuals. Most (if not all) of the victims were companies.

Re:Wait... (1)

Reverend528 (585549) | about 6 years ago | (#25473183)

Well, it sounds like it took a lot of work and brought them each about $83k/year. Honestly, that salary just doesn't seem worth the risk of running a highly-illegal scam.

Illin with the panicillin? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472455)

Is she illin with the panicillin?
Is she reelin in the panicillin?
Is it feelin with the panicillin?
Are you steelin in the panacillin?

Panka Panka

Is she liable no suitifiable no not on trial but so suitifiable
Is she viable no suitifiable pliable style is so suitifiable
so reliable no suitifiable shes not on file but so suitifiable
im on the dial its so suitifiable its like im liable but more suitifiable

Give them a Job (1)

TJ_Phazerhacki (520002) | about 6 years ago | (#25472457)

Wait - they're already employed by someone else. And probably making comparable salaries to their BRILLIANT business scheme.

And, as usual... (4, Funny)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | about 6 years ago | (#25472487)

The true middle man, Keyser Soze, gets off scot free.

Re:And, as usual... (2, Funny)

frosty_tsm (933163) | about 6 years ago | (#25473089)

He's not real!

More Info! (3, Funny)

Mikkeles (698461) | about 6 years ago | (#25472545)

I would like to subscribe to their newsletter; does anyone know their address?

Re:More Info! (4, Funny)

Coraon (1080675) | about 6 years ago | (#25472611)

Sure I'll add you to the newsletter, for $50.00 (In actuality I wont, I'll get someone else to write the newsletter and when he goes looking for these guys who are supposed to be writing it I'll get off scott free)

Re:More Info! (3, Funny)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | about 6 years ago | (#25472689)

Inmate #3L33T3
P.M.I.T.A Prison
Dontdropthesoap, CA, 10101-1010

Re:More Info! (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | about 6 years ago | (#25473195)

Mod parent up, +5 Informative!

Re:More Info! (1)

m1ss1ontomars2k4 (1302833) | about 6 years ago | (#25473271)

Actually, California's ZIP codes are all over 90000.

Re:More Info! (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | about 6 years ago | (#25473511)

I suppose you have a citation that proves that Dontdropthesoap California's zip code is not 10101-1010?

I'll wait.

Re:More Info! (1)

maxume (22995) | about 6 years ago | (#25473557)

It is funny because they are going to get raped.

Ha ha.

Re:More Info! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473739)

Dear SatanicPuppy,

Please cease and desist from soliciting inmate penpal correspondence at this address. Your random ZIP code generator still needs some work.


P.O. Box 1010
New York, NY 10101

These people should be considered heroes (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472553)

The most environmentally friendly trucking company EVER.

Re:These people should be considered heroes (3, Insightful)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | about 6 years ago | (#25472913)

Except that it wasn't environmentally friendly because a truck still rolled with a load. The load got delivered, but the pay for the delivery was stolen. And, chances are the "company" that delivered the load and didn't get paid was an independent trucker, and loosing that money could put them out of business.

Re:These people should be considered heroes (4, Funny)

Timothy Brownawell (627747) | about 6 years ago | (#25473335) which point there's one less truck driving around, and the environment is just a little bit happier. :-p

Wooosh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473385)

Hint: see how GP was modded "Funny". It was a joke. Laugh.

Re:These people should be considered heroes (1)

maxume (22995) | about 6 years ago | (#25473521)

It pays to be tight with your money.

Re:These people should be considered heroes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473615)

is that you Buzz Killington [] ?

Re:These people should be considered heroes (1)

afidel (530433) | about 6 years ago | (#25473703)

If your margins are so thin you can't afford to absorb one lost shipment you are already out of business and just don't know it. My dad has customers file bankruptcy on a semi-regular basis and it never puts him out of business, it's just factored into his margin. Unless you have a single customer who accounts for more than 50% of your sales (like Walmart for many companies) the loss of payment from a single source shouldn't put you out of business.

yro? (4, Funny)

TastyCakes (917232) | about 6 years ago | (#25472557)

What does yro mean? It has been driving me nuts...

Re:yro? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472577)

Your Rights Online

Re:yro? (0)

pak9rabid (1011935) | about 6 years ago | (#25472583)

yro = Your Rights Online

Re:yro? (0)

corychristison (951993) | about 6 years ago | (#25472593)

Your Rights Online

Re:yro? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472597)

You're Retarded Online.

Re:yro? (1)

Trev311 (1161835) | about 6 years ago | (#25472665)

What does yro mean? It has been driving me nuts...

if you are serious... it means your rights online

Re:yro? (3, Funny)

Drooling Iguana (61479) | about 6 years ago | (#25472667)

Yaks Receive Oscar

Re:yro? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472675)

Yellow Ringed Octopus

Re:yro? (3, Interesting)

symes (835608) | about 6 years ago | (#25472709)

Why modded troll?? Seems harsh for a genuine question.

Re:yro? (1)

gnick (1211984) | about 6 years ago | (#25472801)

Agreed - this does not seem to be a Troll post. This seems to be more of a (-1 JFGI) post. The first hit through google, here, [] has the answer at the top (assuming that you can pick the correct answer between "Ottawa/Rockcliffe Airport, the IATA airport code" and "A Slashdot sub-section on politics, Your Rights Online").

Re:yro? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473517)

This seems to be more of a (-1 JFGI) post.

So, uhh, what does JFGI mean?

Re:yro? (1)

j-beda (85386) | about 6 years ago | (#25473691)

Do a google search on "JFGI" and the top hit is: []

Re:yro? (1)

veganboyjosh (896761) | about 6 years ago | (#25473659)

So what, then, does JFGI stand for?

Re:yro? (1)

roguetrick (1147853) | about 6 years ago | (#25472739)

Yipping Reactionary's Office

Re:yro? (1)

TinFoilMan (1371973) | about 6 years ago | (#25472787)

Why was this modded offtopic for an honest question about the tag?

Re:yro? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472837)

Seems to me someone is modding this guy troll and then offtopic and then back again - why?

Don't forget to pay your subcontractors (0, Offtopic)

Krelnor (1189683) | about 6 years ago | (#25472587)

So the moral of the story is to pay your subcontractors, right?

Re:Don't forget to pay your subcontractors (1)

gnick (1211984) | about 6 years ago | (#25473189)

You wouldn't believe how much thinner your profit margin gets when you start actually paying the people doing the work.

Although that business model does allow for more flexible retirement opportunities (sans free room and board).

Government safety system make things less safe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472603)

I'm sure they were most concerned with collecting fines/fees. The actual safety of this safety reporting clearing house probably didn't matter.

I suspect al queda will use the same system to ship their dirty bombs at taxpayer expense.

Perhaps we need to take out a loan to fund a major infrastructure upgrade so we can expand the quality work of the feds to more and more places and localities.

I was scammed by these guys (5, Funny)

Gizzmonic (412910) | about 6 years ago | (#25472607)

Nice guys, they're very persuasive in person. Vitaly is loud, boisterous, always wants to have a good time. He wears fine suits and a lot of gold. Vlade is quieter, and he seems to have some sort of brooding intensity. He was always wearing track suits and listening to Run-DMC.

I honestly believed that these were best guys for transporting my adult novelties across state lines. This can be illegal in some jurisdictions (like Texas) and you need someone who knows how to run an illegal business. Since they are Russian, I knew they could handle it.

They kept telling me that the merchadise was seized at the Texas border by Davy Crockett and Ed Meese, and I believed them for a long time. Finally, after the 3rd shipment I started to suspect something. All of a sudden, the phone stopped ringing. Those Russians had played me for a fool!

That's when I knew I had to become a symbol. A creature of the night, to frighten away criminal scum like these Russians. I prayed to Jesus, and he transformed me into...the Bat-Man!

Re:I was scammed by these guys (5, Informative)

SkunkPussy (85271) | about 6 years ago | (#25472707)


Re:I was scammed by these guys (2)

Gizzmonic (412910) | about 6 years ago | (#25472859)

What, do you think I'm making this up? Or maybe you're criminal Russian scum trying to snuff this story, too! All I can say is...beware the Bat-Man!

Re:I was scammed by these guys (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472911)


Re:I was scammed by these guys (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473633)

Troll ? ... d'oh !

Re:I was scammed by these guys (2, Funny)

alxkit (941262) | about 6 years ago | (#25473289)

is this the plot for GTA 5?

Well.... (1, Interesting)

dedazo (737510) | about 6 years ago | (#25472761)

Illegal or not, I have to grudgingly admit I'm impressed by this. After all, they were just acting as middle men and taking a slice off the top.

Slick, however you look at it.

Re:Well.... (2, Funny)

dgatwood (11270) | about 6 years ago | (#25472861)

Apparently a 100% slice. That's the problem.

Re:Well.... (4, Informative)

gnick (1211984) | about 6 years ago | (#25472967)

No, if that's what they were doing they could have set up a legitimate business and possibly been successful.

They weren't "taking a slice off the top" - They were taking the whole pie, having the sub-contractors haul the loads they'd committed to, and then leaving the drivers uncompensated because they had in fact been hired by scammers rather than a legitimate contracting firm. Contacting the actual contracting firms did no good because they had no knowledge of the contract and the $$ had gone to the Russians.

I admit that the summary was a little hard to follow - I had to read it a couple of times too - TFA makes the situation much more clear.

Re:Well.... (2, Funny)

dedazo (737510) | about 6 years ago | (#25473055)

Oh, I got that from the summary as well, my bad. Thanks for the clarification.

In that case I grudgingly admire nothing whatsoever about this =)

Computer fraud? Or just plain fraud (4, Insightful)

GPS Pilot (3683) | about 6 years ago | (#25472843)

In earlier years, this kind of fraud could have been executed over the telephone, or through the mail. Why does the medium that was used affect the specific criminal charge applied -- "computer fraud"? Just plain fraud would do nicely.

Re:Computer fraud? Or just plain fraud (1)

gnick (1211984) | about 6 years ago | (#25473349)

They do that with just about every category of fraud. I believe that it's partially related to scope and entities responsible for enforcement (different folks handle the case depending on whether I sell you a Rollex from my coat, mail fake credit card applications from my state to yours to gain personal information, or call you from Nigeria to get you to help me with a tricky financial situation). Another reason is probably related to the perceived impact to society at large (can this type of fraud easily swindle large amounts of money from many people or is this just a $1 at a time, 1 person at a time game of 3-card Monte) and the identity of the victims (single voter vs. deep-pocketed insurance company).

So, we wind up with computer fraud, phone fraud, insurance fraud, mail fraud, credit card fraud, charity fraud, etc...

Re:Computer fraud? Or just plain fraud (1)

Ren Hoak (1217024) | about 6 years ago | (#25473477)

I know, I'll get modded offtopic, but...

Every Slashdotter needs this app [].
Ummmm... why does "every" slashdotter need a Mac OS X-only application? Even giving you the liberty that by "every" you just mean "many", I'm guessing your math is seriously off.

Ok, to pretend that I'm really on topic... I agree that this is just plain fraud, there's nothing special here due to computer use.

That's all they made? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25472863)

500 grand? Pikers. I say ship their asses back to Moscow. In fact, based on a number of Russian expats I work and deal with on a daily basis, there are a quite a few Russian immigrants that should be shipped out. Not because I don't like Russians, some of them are very warm and engaging people, but a because they're degenerates. Give 'em all a psych screening test and deport the ones that exhibit delusional arrogance and criminal tendencies. Family persecuted by the Communists? Harrassed because of your religious beliefs? If you're a degenerate, tough shit, I want your fucking ass out of here.

Communication problem (1)

jroysdon (201893) | about 6 years ago | (#25472865)

I guess the problem was that the folks who didn't get paid couldn't communicate well enough with the company who paid the money out. If that company had just cooperated then the funds could have been tracked to see where they were deposited, which would then lead to the criminals. I suspect that's what finally happened in the end.

I don't see the problem here (1)

UncleMantis (933076) | about 6 years ago | (#25472869)

Company needs merch shipped.

Fake company offers services as XYZ.

Fake XYZ makes the run.

Company pays Fake XYZ.

Both parties are happy.
XYZ is confused. That's it. So what is the deal?

Re:I don't see the problem here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473163)


Hackers, pretending to be company A, agree to transport goods for company B.

Then the hackers, pretending to be company B, get company C to actually transport the goods.

Company B pays the hackers (as company A) for transporting the goods.

Company C, believing it was hired by company B, tries to collect from company B, but company B knows nothing about company C.

The hackers get all the money, and company C, who did the actual work, gets nothing.

Crime does not pay (4, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | about 6 years ago | (#25472971)

All that work by several people over three years to make $500K? There were apparently more people involved than the two indicted, and they had some operating costs. So they might have made $50K/year per participant, if they were lucky. And they had all the hassles of running a business. Even without the "going to jail" part, this was a lose.

They probably would have done better running a legit trucking brokerage, which they clearly knew how to do. They had to do all the selling and paperwork a real broker would do. Worse, their scam model didn't allow for much repeat business, so they had to keep hustling to find new customers.

In Other News... (1)

TheNecromancer (179644) | about 6 years ago | (#25473039)

Truckers ran a scamming operation unnoticed for 3 years...

Re:In Other News... (1)

gnick (1211984) | about 6 years ago | (#25473373)

There's a distinction between these guys and truckers.

Truckers drive trucks.

500k isnt that much (2, Insightful)

bobjr94 (1120555) | about 6 years ago | (#25473045)

That sounds like alot of work for 500,000 over 3 years.

Re:500k isnt that much (4, Funny)

Shikaku (1129753) | about 6 years ago | (#25473107)

500k should be enough for everybody.

Re:500k isnt that much (2, Insightful)

skelly33 (891182) | about 6 years ago | (#25473209)

You scooped me. I was going to mention the same. Two hackers, $500K over 3 years is $83K/year. They could have made better money working for Google. Waste of time and prison sentence.

Re:500k isnt that much (1)

Aedrin (1175509) | about 6 years ago | (#25473405)

They did nothing more than make a few phone calls every now and then. Yes, for a real job where you do actual work 500k for 3 guys wouldn't be that much. But that would mean they were actually doing the job they were paid for. And then it wouldn't be news worthy.

Re:500k isnt that much (2, Insightful)

yuriyg (926419) | about 6 years ago | (#25473551)

$500,000 tax-free is more like a $750,000 before taxes. Between the two of them that would be a $125,000 annual salary each for not doing much.
Besides we only know about this scam, who know what other "businesses" these guys were running.

Owner of a trucking company speaks out. (5, Informative)

Toll_Free (1295136) | about 6 years ago | (#25473065)

This has been going on for years.

I OWN a trucking company now, and have been dealing with assholes like this for years.

Whats becoming even MORE of a problem is the illegals who go out and steal (borrow) an MC and/or DOT number and slap it on the side of their truck. Then they "go to work".

What with my insurance costing me > 1200 A MONTH, PER TRUCK, it is easy to see why someone would want to "run illegally". It's fairly hard to get caught, unless you run across state lines. Hence, most of the people don't.

If your truck is titled, with a sticker for the correct weight, you don't go over it, and you don't have any other reason for a scale to flag you, then they don't pull you in. You don't get pulled in, you don't get busted.

At the risk of being called a racist, the BIGGEST Lusers of this type of behavior, are mexicans. Period. And, this isn't a local trend (California), this is a NATIONAL trend.

Whats sad is this: The idiots doing THIS scam didn't have to hack anything. All they had to do is look up a legit DOT / MC number for a BROKER, and then go into business with the same business name.

And brokers licenses are CHEAP. Instead of my insurance rates (600/month liability (1 million dollars), 1000/6 months Cargo, 500/month basic liability (the 600 a month liability doesn't cover you, unless you have a loaded trailer or a load in the "box truck")). For a brokers license, you need a basic 10K dollar insurance policy. Costs, at most, about 250 a month, if you go to the right insurance agent. BOC3 filings cost another 100 a year.

These people are the reasons trucking businesses are going out of business. It's hard enough having to make 3.00 a mile, when most freight will pay you 1.50 to 2.00 a mile. Then you get the .ru faggots in there stealing business, etc.

They went even farther than that. According to the Owner / Operator Independant Drivers Association (, they have pulled Russian's out of trucks who didn't speak A WORD OF ENGLISH, where UNABLE to properly identify 3 road signs, etc., and WHERE BEHIND THE WHEEL OF 80,000 to 120,000 pound trucks. However, if you REALLY research it, you can / will find that most people who are running illegally, carry names like Jose, Manuel, etc.

Sad state of affairs, having to try to make money while people operating illegally are competing with you. Even sadder state of affairs when legal companies are getting profits skimmed off them from illegal brokers, and having to deal with Hose-A and Hose-B running illegally.

Thank GOD I had dedicated accounts who paid me regularly, and everything else was handled COD.

This isn't going to stop, nor is it going to go away. It's a fact of life, and until they do PrePass on EVERY truck (somewhat like RFID, but uses EasyTag type devices in the trucks), everyone who operates on the road has to deal with people like this.


(disclaimer: I took a motorcycle into a wall at 130MPH 6 or so months ago. My company closed at that time, so read into this what you will. Unfortunately, this WAS work related, the motorcycle was a customers, and the throttle cable stuck in a 3/4 gear shift getting the bike to my trailer.)

Re:Owner of a trucking company speaks out. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473467)

mods- please mod parent up

Re:Owner of a trucking company speaks out. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#25473639)

Why didn't you just press the kill switch or pull in the clutch?

Re:Owner of a trucking company speaks out. (1)

gyrogeerloose (849181) | about 6 years ago | (#25473655)

80,000 to 120,000 pound trucks.

I assume you were doing heavy permit hauling since the weight limit on the U.S. national highway system is 80,000 pounds.

Sounds like you guys need a PKI (1)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about 6 years ago | (#25473713)

Sign all your communications with trusted keys...

Almost legitimate (2, Insightful)

Bob-taro (996889) | about 6 years ago | (#25473071)

Except for the fact that they were stealing another company's identity, that's not a bad idea. If they'd started something called, say, "truck-bay" and allowed people to take bids from trucking companies on specific delivery jobs (tacking on a service fee of their own of course), they'd have a perfectly legitimate business.

Quick Calculator (0, Redundant)

Trojan35 (910785) | about 6 years ago | (#25473347)

500k / 2 people = $250k per person / 3 years = $80k/yr

I really can't see how that's worth it. Get a job (you obviously have computer skills), avoid the prison time, get paid about as much or more.

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