A federal jury has found Scott Tucker guilty on all counts in a racketeering case that centered on the former Level 5 Motorsports team owner/driver’s $2 billion payday lending business.
Tucker and his attorney Timothy Muir were convicted Friday in Manhattan federal court on charges that included the collection of unlawful debts, using misleading contracts and falsely stating that the businesses were owned and operated by Native American tribes.
According to a report in Bloomberg, the four-time American Le Mans Series champion could face as much as 20 years in prison, with sentencing to be made early next year.
The verdict follows a 2016 case in Nevada, where a federal judge ruled that Tucker deceived payday loan customers and owed the Federal Trade Commission $1.2 billion.
It resulted in the seizing of many of Tucker’s assets, as well as the auctioning off of Level 5’s assets in May, including nearly a dozen of the team’s race cars.
“As a unanimous jury found today, Scott Tucker and Timothy Muir targeted and exploited millions of struggling, everyday Americans by charging them illegally high interest rates on payday loans, as much as 700 percent, said Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim in a statement.
“Tucker and Muir sought to get away with their crimes by claiming that this $2 billion business was actually owned and operated by Native American tribes. But that was a lie.
“The jury saw through Tucker and Muir’s lies and saw their business for what it was – an illegal and predatory scheme to take callous advantage of vulnerable workers living from paycheck to paycheck.”
Tucker competed in top-level sports car racing from 2007-14, winning more than 100 races, including GT Daytona class honors in 2014 Rolex 24 at Daytona, in Level 5’s final appearance as a team.