A 54-year-old Lyford man entered a guilty plea to extortion, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani late last week.

Patrick Gorena was a border investigator for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of Texas.

As part of his plea, Gorena admitted that when auditing a trucking company, he did not report safety violations that would have exposed the company to potential fines and the loss of its DOT license. In return, Gorena demanded $3,500, according to the statement.

However, he ultimately accepted $2,000 from an undercover law enforcement officer posing as a representative of the trucking company.

U.S. District Judge David Hittner will impose sentencing April 18. At that time, Gorena faces up to 20 years in prison.

He was permitted to remain on bond pending that hearing.

Nominations sought for WIT’s logistics award

The Women in Trucking Association (WIT), Truckstop, and the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) are seeking nominations for the 2023 Distinguished Woman in Logistics Award (DWLA). The award started in 2015 to recognize outstanding individuals for their achievements and leadership in logistics.

The award is open to high-performing women in any field related to logistics, including supply chain management, third-party logistics, and trucking.

The award selection committee includes representatives from WIT, Truckstop, TIA, and academia.

The winner of the award will be announced during the TIA 2023 Capital Ideas Conference & Exhibition, on Friday, April 21 in Orlando, Florida.

Anyone can nominate a candidate by completing and submitting the nomination form by Feb. 20.

Massachusetts CDL school closing

A CDL training facility in Springfield, Massachusetts will close next month.

Tri-State CDL Training Center will close early next month. The property it occupies has been sold to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. The state plans on developing the 25-acre site for a rail maintenance facility 

Morgan Finn, owner and instructor at Tri-State since it began 25 years ago, told masslive.com he expected to retire.

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