Generals owner accused of locomotive theft

Stephen Herzog

Nov. 13, 2010 at 5:13 a.m.

The future of the Victoria Generals could be in jeopardy with federal felony charges pending against owner and president Tracy Young.

In May, Young and two other men, Richard H. McCown, Jr. and Gregory Richard Stokes, were accused of planning to steal a locomotive in Arkansas.

The indictment, in the U.S. District Court in Little Rock, says that between June and August of 2008, the three "conspired with each other and others unknown to the grand jury to commit wire fraud by devising a scheme and artifice for obtaining property by means of false pretense."

Young could not be reached for comment. Generals General Manager Blake Koch said Saturday that Young was out of the state and wouldn't be back until next week.

The indictment says Stokes called Young in July to ask about obtaining locomotive marking numbers to move a locomotive to be manufactured and carried out by an unknown person.

The indictment says Young provided the number for the purpose of re-labeling a locomotive and the name of the facility where it would be shipped.

It says a co-conspirator re-labeled a locomotive with a number registered to and provided by Young.

The indictment says Young asked the owner of Titan Rail in Illinois to set up the move of the re-labeled locomotive to the Orange Port Terminal in Orange, of which Young is the owner.

Young pleaded not guilty in June and a jury trial is set for Jan. 24 in Little Rock.

One of Young's other businesses, Lonestar Locomotive Repair, based in Victoria, is listed on the Secretary of State's website as being dissolved based on a filing on July 30 for failure to pay a franchise tax.

Currently, Victoria Baseball Club, the parent company of the Victoria Generals, is still active, and Young is the owner and president.

Uri Geva, president of the Texas Collegiate League in which the Generals play, said Young and the team were in good standing with the league.

"Each owner is responsible for their franchise," said Geva, who is also a team owner of the Brazos Valley Bombers.

He said most of the owners have other businesses with which the league isn't particularly concerned as long as the owner has enough capital to maintain the team.

Koch said Young hadn't spoken to him about the charges.

"There's no reason for me to believe the Generals would be in jeopardy," Koch said. "We're still a ways away from the season, but I think he would have said something to me if there was any doubt."

Koch said Young's role with the team is strictly on the business end.

He said Young often had to fund the Generals from his railroad businesses in the first two years with the team, but the team should be self-sustained coming into the third year.

Geva said his work with Young, Koch and the rest of the team has always been positive.

"Tracy has been committed to making the team better, and he's been very involved with the team and has a passion for giving back to the community," he said.

Geva also wasn't familiar with the charges in Arkansas.

"I have no doubt that whatever is going on in Arkansas will not affect the product on the field," he said. "I wish him the best and hope it's all just a misunderstanding."

Geva said Young has always been honest and upfront and hasn't missed payments.

He said the league has no decisions to make unless there's a conviction.



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