DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A Texas National Guardsman was sentenced to two years in federal prison and order to repay a $75,000 fine for theft of government money, announced U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Erin Nealy Cox.
Emmanuel Alvarado, 35, is the third of three conspirators to be sentenced for participating in a scheme to use stolen government fuel credit cards, or fleet cards, to purchase fuel for themselves and others.
According to information provided in court, Alvarado, along with Carlos Espinola, 48, and Don Wright, 41, knew each other through service in the Texas Army National Guard.
In their positions with the Texas Army National Guard, Espinola and Wright had access to General Services Administration and Department of Defense fleet cards used to purchase fuel and maintenance for government vehicles.
Espinola and Wright stole fleet cards from the Texas Army National Guard and shared them with Alvarado.
Espinola also obtained a “skimming” device which he used to replicate the stolen fleet cards.
Alvarado owned an automotive businesses in the Fort Worth area, which, among other things, offered towing services.
Alvarado used the fleet cards to fuel his tow trucks, as well as other vehicles. In exchange for the fleet cards, Alvarado paid Espinola a fee.
The conspirators’ thefts caused a loss exceeding $100,000 to the United States.
In September 2019, Alvarado pleaded guilty to one count of theft of government money.
Espinola and Wright earlier pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges.
Espinola was sentenced to 48 months in federal prison and Wright was sentenced to 3 months in federal prison.
The defendants were each ordered to pay restitution to the government.