Andrews electrician sentenced to prison

A federal judge sentenced an Andrews County electrician to 97 months in federal prison today for a false billing scheme and failing to file tax returns.

The false billing scheme by the electrician, 46-year-old Randall Varian Hanks, resulted in more than a $1.5 million loss to local businesses, a United States Attorney’s Office press release said.

United States District Judge David Counts also ordered Hanks to pay $1,786,559.68 in restitution and be placed on supervised release for a period of three years after completing his prison term, the release detailed, and ordered Hanks to forfeit his residential property to the government, agreeing it was proceeds generated from the defendant’s fraudulent scheme.

Hanks was convicted by a federal jury of four counts of mail fraud and three counts of failure to file a tax return on Nov. 9 last year, the release stated.

The release detailed that Hanks reportedly generated fraudulent service tickets and invoices in excess of $1.5 million for parts and services he fraudulently claimed to have provided to two oilfield service companies’ customers from June 2013 to May 2016. Both companies paid Hanks and then billed the customers for the parts and services Hanks claimed to have provided.

Further testimony revealed Hanks received more than the applicable threshold in personal income each year, the release stated, yet did not file income tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service for 2013, 2014 and 2015, resulting in nearly $500,000 in tax losses to the U.S. Government.

The case was investigated by the FBI Oilfield Theft Task Force and IRS-CI agents, and Assistant U.S. Attorney General Glenn Harwood prosecuted the case.