A criminal complaint was unsealed today charging a Macomb Township man in a wire fraud scheme involving the trafficking in Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Employee Purchase Control Numbers (EPCNs), announced Acting United States Attorney Saima Mohsin.
Mohsin was joined in the announcement by Special Agent in Charge Vance Callender, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Michigan and Ohio
Charged is Apollon Nimo, 34. Nimo made his initial appearance today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Anthony P. Patti and was released on bond. A preliminary exam was set for May 21, 2021.
The criminal complaint alleges that Nimo, a salesman at Parkway Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Clinton Township, improperly trafficked in, used, and sold FCA EPCNs to provide discounts to non-qualified car buyers from 2014 through the present. The EPCNs were bought and sold through private Facebook Groups. According to the complaint, it is alleged that some, if not most, of the sales conducted by Nimo included fraudulent use of EPCNs resulting in a loss to FCA of approximately $8.7 million dollars. The complaint further alleges that Nimo profited both by selling the illegally obtained EPCNs to buyers and through bonuses FCA provided to him based on the volume of his sales. Nimo had the highest number of EPCN sales nationwide for the time period of May 2018 to August 2018 and January 2019 to March 2019.
“Automobile sales play a major role in our state’s economy,” said Acting US Attorney Mohsin. “Corruption of the sort alleged in today’s complaint imposes costs on automotive manufacturers that are ultimately passed to consumers. The charges announced today are serious and reflect my office’s commitment to ensuring the integrity of this market.”
“This morning, HSI special agents arrested a top selling Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) salesman for defrauding the company of approximately $8.7 million by exploiting FCA’s employee purchase program,” said Vance Callender, HSI Special Agent in Charge for Michigan and Ohio. “HSI will continue to fight financial crime and support the integrity of American manufacturing by leveraging its unique law enforcement capabilities.”
A criminal complaint is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
This case was investigated by the special agents of Homeland Security Investigations and the Clinton Township Police Department along with assistance from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles corporate investigators. Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Chasteen is prosecuting the case.