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Five local people sentenced in BP Fraud cases
Five people who claimed they lost money because of the 2010 oil spill have been sentenced for filing fraudulent claims.
The US Department of Justice says they falsely inflated their income as employees of Hooters of Pensacola Beach.
Each person faces prison time and must pay restitution to the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Trust.
Four years ago the Deepwater Horizon oil spill devastated the gulf coast..
Many business suffered and made claims to keep their businesses and families afloat.
But some cheated the system..
Marquis Seals, Bernard Cook, Tremayne Jamison, Charles Martin, and Joseph Doyon are now behind bars for making fraudulent claims during the BP oil spill.
The US Department of Justice says Martin and Seals, former managers at the Hooters on Pensacola Beach, helped employees
Cook and Doyon submit falsely inflated claims of lost wages to the Gulf Coast claims facility.
The Department of Justice also says Martin wrote a letter to the Coast Guard's National Pollution Funds Center saying Jaimson had a contract with Hooters that was canceled because of the spill.
The department determined that was a lie.
All five men pleaded guilty and were sentenced to prison.
Kirk Newkirk "It is a little aggravating and I've heard of this in other places they're not the first ones and early on BP was really throwing money to anyone who walked in."
Kirk Newkirk owns Key Sailing on Pensacola Beach.
He says during the 2010 oil spill his business was down nearly 30-percent.
He still hasn't received any money from his claim.
"There is quite a few of us I'm not the only one and part of it is them changing the claims process."
He says the Gulf Coast Claims Facility is dragging their feet...
"Like today I'm sitting there looking up paperwork from 2008 which is five years ago now just to verify figures."
Newkirk says he's filled out all the appropriate paperwork and has been honest during throughout the process.
"Sometimes I wonder if they are trying to wear some people out to where they just throw their hands up and give up."
He says hopes to be paid in the next few months.
"Where is the money? If it's there go ahead and cut it loose for legitimate claims."
On top of the prison sentences the 5-men face.
All together they will also have to pay 85,000 dollars restitution to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill trust.
We contacted Hooters about the situation but never heard back.