Today, 30-year-old Jason Weigel of Nevada, Iowa was arrested and charged with Ongoing Criminal Conduct (Class B Felony), Fraudulent Practices (Class C Felony), and Identity Theft (Class D Felony). These charges stem from his involvement in several efforts to defraud the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) of money and land.
Additionally, in recent weeks, David Weigel and his accomplice Grady Marx have each been charged with one count of Fraudulent Practices (Class C Felony). Both David Weigel and Marx were previously arrested on several other charges.
As of July, 2013, agents with DPS and IFIT have identified more than $500,000 in DOT monies that was illegally secured by the Wiegels or Grady Marx.
Jason Weigel is currently being held at the Fort Dodge Correctional Facility on unrelated charges.
The charges against Jason Weigel are the direct result of a tip provided to IFIT by a member of the public. Law enforcement continues to encourage individuals who have information related to this investigation to call IFIT office at 515-725-6290.
The aforementioned charges are a result of a two-year long investigation that included a detailed review of hundreds of financial records. On July 7, 2011, DOT Director Paul Trombino requested the assistance of the Iowa Department of Public Safety to investigate suspicious activity involving land sales, land leases and mowing contracts for Iowa DOT land. Through the course of the investigation a team of officers and prosecutors trained to investigate financial crimes was assembled from multiple agencies. The newly formed Iowa Financial Investigation Team (IFIT) discovered through document review and witness interviews that beginning in 1997, David Wiegel used his employment within DOT to personally, financially benefit from his position. Weigel is accused of selling DOT land to various individuals and companies while keeping a portion of the funds. Additionally, he is accused of charging various individuals for maintaining DOT lands, and personally retaining those monies.
Also through the investigation, IFIT revealed that Grady Marx conspired with David Weigel. Marx is accused of receiving payment for the sale of land belonging to the DOT, as well as funneling money to Weigel after receiving payment from DOT for the mowing of DOT lands, a business arrangement facilitated by Weigel.
It should be noted a criminal charges is merely an accusation and all suspects are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.