Ex-Pilot Flying J head’s racist remarks delay prison time
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — A former Pilot Flying J president convicted of fraud will get to spend Christmas at home.
The Knoxville News Sentinel reports an appeals court approved on Tuesday Mark Hazelwood’s request to remain on house arrest until he finishes fighting his conviction. The 59-year-old Hazelwood was convicted in February of cheating trucking companies out of millions of dollars. He was set to start a 12 ½-year prison sentence this month.
Hazelwood’s lawyers argue his taped racist remarks including a slur about interracial couples prejudiced jurors against their client. The appeals court ruled the argument “raises a substantial question” to be sorted out on appeal.
Pilot Flying J is controlled by the family of Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam. The Haslams haven’t been charged with wrongdoing.