Image Credit: Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency / Facebook
The Tennessee Conservative Staff –
An officer for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is facing charges of misconduct and theft of property after being accused of charging at least $60,000 worth of gasoline on a state fuel card over 13 years, according to an indictment.
The indictment, signed by the grand jury on September 18, indicates that James Buchanan purchased $60,000 worth of gas on the state’s credit between January 1, 2010, and June 1, 2023.
It was announced in June that the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation was investigating allegations made against a TWRA officer in Morgan County.
According to an evidence log, the TWRA seized miscellaneous gas receipts, a “WEX Fleet Card,” a “US Bank Card”, four gas cans full of gas and 24 other gas or fuel cans.
After an internal auditor was notified in February of potentially fraudulent gas card use, an affidavit indicates that the investigation began in May of 2023.
During the internal analysis by the TWRA, the auditor found that between August 2008 and February 2023, Buchanan spent $119,002 on 50,925.7 gallons of gas. Buchanan was logged to have only traveled 227,357 miles, meaning his issued vehicle would have only been getting three to four miles per gallon.
As reported by WATE, the TWRA placed a GPS tracker on Buchanan’s assigned vehicle in March. The affidavit says that Buchanan was surveilled by investigators, who reported to have seen him filling fuel cans in the back of the vehicle on at least four occasions.
On multiple occasions, the GPS tracker indicated that the vehicle left Buchanan’s residence, went to the gas station, and returned to the residence.