The alleged seller of $9 million in fake renewable fuel credits has been charged with wire fraud, money laundering and violating criminal provisions of the Clean Air Act (CAA). United States v. Hailey, No. 11‑540 (D. Md. 10/3/11). According to the charges, filed in a federal court in Maryland, the defendant sold 32 million renewable identification numbers representing 22 million gallons of biodiesel fuel to oil companies, which bought them to comply with provisions of the Energy Independence and Security Act (EIS A).
Under the EIS A, all oil companies that market petroleum in the United States must produce a given quantity of renewable fuel or purchase credits, known as renewable identification numbers (RIN s). The defendant is charged with creating fake RIN s and selling them to unsuspecting oil companies. He allegedly used proceeds of his alleged wire fraud scheme to purchase luxury vehicles, real estate and jewelry. According to the Department of Justice, he also made numerous false statements to EPA investigators. The defendant faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for wire fraud, 10 years for money laundering and two years for CAA violations.