Panel indicts ex-food distributor employee

EDMOND (February 8, 2010)—A federal grand jury returned an indictment Wednesday against a former employee of an Edmond food distributor, accusing the defendant of defrauding a customer.

The 19-count indictment accuses Andrew Paul Weaver, 37, of Enid, of defrauding the restaurant La Fiesta, a customer of Ben E. Keith Company, a distributor of food service products to restaurants, hospitals, schools, nursing facilities and other businesses throughout the state.

Amounts allegedly paid to Weaver through 19 transactions ranged from $428 to $6,705.11, and the grand jury alleges that he kept the money from these sales of food items and supplies for himself, according to court records.

If convicted, Weaver faces up to 20 years in prison, and up to a $250,000 fine, or both. A warrant was to be issued for Weaver’s arrest.

No attorney information was listed for Weaver. An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

From Oct. 7, 1996, through March 30, 2007, the defendant was employed by Ben E. Keith as a district sales representative, according to court records. He was responsible for placing orders for food items for customers in his sales area.

When a customer placed an order with the company, the defendant prepared a sales order on his laptop computer. He then sent the order via wire to Ben E. Keith’s corporate office in Fort Worth, Texas. Orders for Oklahoma were sent electronically to the Edmond distribution center where the food items and supplies were delivered to customers.

The grand jury accuses the defendant of devising a scheme to defraud La Fiesta. The defendant allegedly made unauthorized orders of food items and restaurant supplies under the name of La Fiesta, which did not request the items, nor authorize the defendant to do so, according to the indictment.

The defendant allegedly charged the items to La Fiesta’s account, and the customer paid for the items without knowing they had been ordered, but not delivered to the restaurant. He then would personally pick up the items from either the Ben E. Keith distribution center, the company’s delivery truck or a convenience store in Billings.

He is accused of selling the fictitiously ordered food items to other Ben E. Keith customers including Oakwood Country Club, Wild Thyme and Panevino. The defendant allegedly kept the money from the sale of these items for his own personal use, according to the court document.

In addition to the $6,705.11 allegedly paid to Weaver, other amounts included $4,809.79, $4,791.50, $3,270.25 and $1,687.51, the indictment states.


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