Former Swift employee embezzled more than $1.6M from trucking company

January 5, 2018

Tyson Fisher


A former employee of Swift Transportation has pleaded guilty to charges of fraud, money laundering and tax evasion after he embezzled more than $1.6 million from the mega carrier, according to federal court documents.

David Dwight Reynolds, 29, of Glendale, Ariz., was hired by Swift in April 2013 as an information technology network engineer. Part of Reynolds’ duties was to maintain Swift’s IT network. In order to perform his job, Reynolds was given two Comdata MasterCard purchasing cards in his name but owned by Swift. According to the indictment, Swift was able to trust Reynolds with the broad purchasing authority because of his expertise.

The process was pretty standard. After Reynolds made a purchase, he would send an invoice to a supervisor for approval. Upon approval, the invoices would be sent to accounts payable and Comdata would be reimbursed for the purchases.

Reynolds’ supervisor who approved of the purchases knew little about IT networks. Therefore, she relied on Reynolds’ expertise when signing off on approvals. It was commonplace for Reynolds to submit invoices late, urgently request reimbursements and claim failure to do so could result in “calamitous effects on the IT network,” court documents reveal.

Beginning October 2013, Reynolds made purchases from various internet companies, including eBay and Amazon. In order to conceal these fraudulent purchases, Reynolds altered the invoices to make the purchases appear to be related to the IT network.

Fraudulent purchases started with IT equipment for personal use. However, Reynolds eventually started to buy items more irrelevant to IT, including cellphones, furniture, televisions, cameras, welding equipment and firearm accessories. What began as IT equipment being shipped to the office turned into more personal items being shipped directly to Reynolds’ home, despite invoices suggesting appropriate purchases being shipped to Swift.

According to the indictment, Reynolds bought more than $850,000 worth of personal items with a Swift purchasing card from 2013 to 2016.

In March 2014, Reynolds established a business called PGN Solutions and listed himself and two others as managers. However, the two other people listed were never aware of the arrangement. A few months later, Reynolds began making payment to PGN Solutions with the Swift purchasing card, telling his supervisor that the company was a third-party contractor with a company that Swift had been doing business with. In total, Reynolds charged the Swift card more than $27,000 to PGN Solutions.

Between October 2014 and December 2016, Reynolds made 13 check requests to PGN Solutions ranging from $4,500 to $196,000, totaling to $850,000. Of the 13 checks, Reynolds deposited 11 checks into PGN Solution’s bank account worth more than $800,000.

The scheme involved hiring a legitimate company to do the contracted work needed and pay them with the MasterCard. Reynolds would then alter the invoice to show that PGN Solutions did the work at a higher price.

Reynolds defrauded Swift out of more than $1.65 million, including $850,000 in fraudulent purchases with the MasterCard and more than $800,000 checks to PGN Solutions. Other purchases Reynolds made include personal credit card bills, his wife’s tuition, blank Blu-ray discs, Blu-ray/CD/DVD burner and nearly $1,000 worth of Bose headphones.

On June 6, 2017, Reynolds was charged with 47 various counts, including 14 counts of wire fraud, 19 counts of mail fraud and 14 counts of money laundering. On Dec. 20, he pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud, three counts of mail fraud, one count of money laundering and to one additional count of tax evasion, leaving 41 counts dismissed.

The court found Reynolds liable for more than $559,000 in tax liabilities from 2013 through 2016. Further sentencing, including restitution, will be decided during a hearing scheduled for April 4.