Lakeland car dealer pleads guilty to crimes

A Lakeland used car salesman is one of three people from Shelby County who has entered a guilty plea for his role in a money laundering scheme.

Brian Bowman, 46, of Lakeland, pleaded guilty to one count of filing fraudulent documents with the IRS, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Bowman, along with Wayne David McAlpin Jr., 50, and James Austin “the Rev,” 61, faced crimes from what the office said were related to selling cars as a way to cover up drug trafficking.

According to the release, Bowman was the president of Pyramid Used Car Sales, where he sold multiple vehicles to drug traffickers knowing they had previously had vehicles seized by law enforcement for transporting and concealing illegal drugs. He and the other men then titled the vehicles in other peoples’ names and filed false documents with the IRS to cover up the money trail, the office said.

In addition to the charges, Bowman and McAlpin agreed to forfeit almost $12 million dollars in bank accounts, investment accounts and vehicles, including a 2008 Bentley Continental GTC; a 2011 Audi A8; a 2009 Cadillac Escalade; and a 2011 Lexus GX460.

This investigation was conducted in conjunction with prosecutors in Memphis as part of the

Department of Justice’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces program, which seeks to reduce the availability of drugs by disrupting and dismantling major drug trafficking organizations, money laundering organizations and related criminal enterprises. The crimes were investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, IRS Criminal Investigations, the Memphis Police Department and the Shelby County Sheriff’s Department.