North Carolina AG sues timber harvesting company for deceptive practices

18 March 2022

North Carolina’s attorney general has sued a harvesting and timber services company for deceptive advertisement and consumer practices in the state’s central region.

In a statement, attorney general Josh Stein said the acts of Christopher Dillard and his company Dillard Timber LLC negatively impacted commerce in the state.

“We allege Dillard Timber is a sham of a business that rips off consumers,” said Mr Stein. “I’m taking Mr Dillard to court to prevent him from harming others. I thank Senator Tom McInnis for bringing this matter to our attention.”

The AG said Dillard advertised his logging and timber services to North Carolina customers, even though no such company was ever registered and no such business ever existed.

He claimed that it specialized in select cutting, clear cutting and thinning of timber, but in reality, Dillard owned no logging equipment, had no employees, and did not himself do logging, timber milling, or other timberwork. 

Instead, Dillard contracted with third parties to perform the services and customers were left without options when jobs were not performed completely or as promised.

In one case, loggers only harvested the most valuable timber and left the rest behind, including logging debris, and Dillard never returned to complete the work. 

Additionally, Dillard paid the landowners 50 to 80% below market rate for the timber harvested from their land. He used per cord rates in the contract, not tonnes, creating the impression he was paying customers at, or close to, market rates for wood.

Investigations later revealed that the customer in question was not paid at all for at least one truckload of timber.

AG Stein is seeking to prevent Dillard from operating in the timber business or advertising timber services to North Carolinians, along with consumer restitution, civil penalties, attorney fees and other relief.