United States Attorney Bill Nettles Wednesday announced the indictment and arrest of James Duvall Love, 33, and Deon Dovell Roberts, 34, for conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, causing a train wreck, and unlawful interference with a train operator.
The Indictment was returned by a Grand Jury sitting in Columbia, but was sealed pending the arrests of the defendants, which occurred earlier Wednesday. The Indictment alleges that on the early morning hours of September 6, 2013, the two men parked a car in the path of an oncoming Amtrak train, got out of the car prior to the collision, and then returned to the car after the collision, feigning injury, all for the purpose of submitting bogus claims for personal injuries and other losses.
Love, a convicted felon, was also charged in a separate indictment with unlawful possession of a shotgun and live shells.
The case was investigated by Special Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Amtrak Office of Inspector General, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Fairfax Police Department, and the Allendale County Sheriff’s Department. Amtrak Inspector General Tom Howard emphasized that: “The safety of the American railroad system is among the highest priorities of the country’s law enforcement agencies. Those who would seek to interfere with the well-being of Amtrak’s passengers and the commerce of the railroads will be held accountable to the greatest extent allowed under the law.”
Assistant United States Attorney Eric Klumb is prosecuting the case.
The United States Attorney stated that the charges alleged in the Indictment are merely accusations and that all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.