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Glenwood City businessman faces fraud charges

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crime and courts New Richmond,Wisconsin 54017 http://www.newrichmond-news.com/sites/all/themes/newrichmondnews_theme/images/social_default_image.png
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Glenwood City businessman faces fraud charges
New Richmond Wisconsin 127 South Knowles Avenue 54017

A Glenwood City man posted a $50,000 signature bond on multiple theft charges in connection to his fuel delivery business.

John P. Rassbach, 53, made an initial appearance Nov. 10 before Judge Edward F. Vlack on 14 counts of felony and misdemeanor theft by false representation.

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Rassbach, doing business as Rassbach Oil Co., allegedly inflated the amount of propane he delivered resulting in customers paying for more than they got. He is accused of defrauding five of the customers for more than $18,700.

A preliminary hearing was set for Dec. 30 at 2 p.m.

Rassbach was also charged with fraud by the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ).

Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said Nov. 9 that a civil consumer protection enforcement action was filed alleging numerous instances of fraudulent billing of customers by Rassbach Oil Company.

The civil action accompanies a criminal theft charge the Department of Justice filed on Nov. 2.

The lawsuit alleges that Rassbach defrauded customers in a variety of ways including physically "shorting" customers by pumping a portion of the fuel back into his delivery truck; falsifying propane delivery invoices to overstate the amount of propane delivered; and issuing duplicate fuel delivery tickets to multiple customers for a single fuel delivery.

The civil action seeks restitution for all consumers whom Rassbach overbilled, as well as forfeitures and other sanctions. Each violation could carry a potential $10,000 forfeiture.

Consumers who believe they were defrauded by Rassbach, and who have not already filed a complaint, can obtain a complaint form by calling the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) at 1-800-422-7128.

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