Consol Energy Executive Pleads Guilty to Stealing Gas Royalties
A former Consol Energy executive has pleaded guilty to stealing $440,000 in gas royalties from the company by forging deed transfers so he could funnel the money into a fake company he ran out of a post office box.
Thirty-seven-year-old Scott Hamilton, of Baden, pleaded guilty to mail fraud Wednesday and will be sentenced by a federal judge in Pittsburgh on March 25.
Hamilton was Consol's land records general manager when he used two fake identities to forge deed transfers from Consol to his fake company, PRH. That enabled him to funnel drilling rights royalties from an 1,100-acre parcel in West Virginia and a 95-acre parcel in Illinois to the bogus company.
Consol officials alerted federal authorities when they discovered the missing royalties in September 2013.