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Is wine grape fraud okay with the TTB? Inaction on Jeff Hill begs that question

IMPORTANT NOTE: Hill Family Estate as well as William Hill Estate Winery, are not affiliated with, nor owned by the same families as The Hill Wine Company in this and previous bankruptcy articles.


 

By Jeff Siegel
Contributing Editor

Justice comes a lot swifter and surer from the State of California than it does from the federal government. Take the TTB’s lack of action when it comes to  Jeffry J. Hill and Napa Valley grape fraud.

 

Hill currently calls the Napa County Jail his home after a Napa Superior Court judge sentenced him to a year in jail and three years probation on August 11, 2015 following his “no contest” plea to two counts of grand theft. Hill pleaded to the charges in April 2014.

 

In April 2014 — the same length of time since Hill pleaded no contest to grand theft — the TTB accused Hill of committing a laundry list of of felonies, including mislabeling grapes and appellations: TTB Carpet Bombs Hill Wine Co With Felony Allegations.

 

The terms of probation also require him to make restitution for the estimated $893,000 value of wine grapes he admitted stealing. However, Hill is likely to dodge paying that (details below).

 

For the TTB, on the other hand, legal action seems nether swift nor certain.

Wine Executive News subscribers please click here to read the complete 800-word article.

Also In This Article:

The full text of the following sections is available to premium subscribers of Wine Executive News.

  • TTB: “Can’t Comment. Can’t Comment. Can’t Comment. “

  • Understaffing? Or bigger fish to fry?

  • TTB’s 2014 felony manifesto forced Hill to relinquish his federal permits

  • The maneuver Hill is using to avoid paying $800K in court-ordered theft restitution to Del Dotto

Current Court Filings Available

Wine Executive News subscribers can click the following links to access the complete court documents for the new bankruptcy petition and list of creditors. All of the creditors are listed as unsecured.

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PREVIOUS WINE INDUSTRY INSIGHT COVERAGE OF THE HILL WINE COMPANY BANKRUPTCY