San Antonio man indicted in alleged oilfield scheme to defraud Apache

February 5, 2018 GMT

A San Antonio federal grand jury has indicted a local man on charges that he defrauded Apache Corp. and Lone Star Bank in a scheme that caused the oil and gas exploration company to pay for the same work invoices multiple times.

James Clyde Mann, 42, was charged in a 23-count indictment with bank fraud, mail fraud and wire fraud last month. He turned himself in Friday and, after his initial hearing, the charges were made public.

Mann was released on a $50,000 unsecured bond and is scheduled to be arraigned Feb. 15. His lawyer couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

The indictment alleges that Mann, who worked for now-defunct Stag Energy Services, defrauded Houston-based Apache and Lone Star by submitting duplicate work tickets for the same services. That resulted in Stag getting paid twice, and even three times, for the same work, according to the indictment.

Lone Star had entered into various agreements to ultimately purchase up to $2.5 million of Stag’s receivables for their face amount, less an approximately 2.5 percent service charge.

Last month, Apache obtained a default judgment against Mann after he failed to appear for the civil case. Judge Antonia Arteaga ruled Apache should recover about $746,000 for fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud, along with about $254,000 in punitive damages and prejudgment interest of about $102 a day since April 30, 2014.

Mann’s lawyer at the time said Apache’s complaints boiled down to a billing dispute.

“They drafted (the lawsuit) like it’s something out of a Grisham novel,” said the lawyer, who no longer represents Mann. We’re pretty confident that when all the dust settles at the end, James is going to be vindicated.”

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