07:04 GMT28 October 2020
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    The co-owners of a biofuel company in the US state of Indiana have been sentenced to 57 months and 30 months in prison for generating more than $60 million in phony tax- and renewable-fuel credits, the US Department of Justice announced in a press release on Tuesday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Defendant Fred Witmer received a 57-month sentence after admitting that fuel falsely designated for transportation was instead used to make fire-starter logs and for asphalt and cement production, the release explained.

    "The defendants purposefully defrauded the federal government, taking illegal advantage of a program created by Congress to help our nation achieve energy, economic, and environmental goals," Justice Department Environment and Natural Resources Division acting Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Wood stated in the release.

    The other defendant, Gary Jury, received a 30-month sentence for conspiring to fraudulently claim tax credits and for providing false statements to the US Environmental Protection Agency, the release added.

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