Worley & Obetz

A Worley & Obetz tanker sits along White Oak Road, Manheim, in this June 2018 photo.

May 15, 2018: Worley & Obetz CEO Jeff Lyons fails to appear for a meeting with Worley & Obetz Vice Chairman Seth Obetz and Giant Food Stores, its biggest customer.

Lyons’ family reports him missing. Police say his cellphone is turned off and his wallet and credit cards left at his home.

Worley & Obetz discovers that Giant's books show smaller transactions with Worley & Obetz than the figures Lyons reported, and terminates Lyons for cause.

Feds charge 3 former Worley & Obetz executives with bank fraud

May 17, 2018: Manheim Township police announce Lyons has been located. A family member says on Facebook that he was found in Minnesota.

May 21, 2018: Worley & Obetz lays off 45 administrative and management employees, saying it needs to trim operating expenses “due to potentially fraudulent activity.”

May 29, 2018: Worley & Obetz tells the state Department of Labor & Industry it has lost Giant as a customer, because Giant was unsure about Worley & Obetz’s viability. This causes the entire wholesale department, with 64 employees, to fold.

May 31, 2018: Worley & Obetz posts a message on Facebook announcing the “disappearance” of its CEO, “potentially fraudulent activity,” the two waves of layoffs and an investigation by law enforcement that “will take weeks at least.”

Three banking companies, including Fulton Financial, indicate they face large losses on loans to Worley & Obetz that have gone bad. A fourth bank does the same June 1, pushing the collective losses to up to $61.9 million.

June 2, 2018: Worley & Obetz posts a message on its Facebook page expressing optimism for the future as an energy company serving the residential market.

June 4, 2018: Worley & Obetz announces that its banks have rejected its plan to go forward, triggering the immediate shutdown of the firm, including its Amerigreen and Ranck subsidiaries, idling all 150 remaining employees.

June 5, 2018: Seth Obetz announces plans to launch a residential energy company, Obetz Energy, in July.

June 6, 2018: Worley & Obetz files for bankruptcy liquidation.

June 7, 2018: Worley & Obetz attorney publicly blames Lyons for “fraudulent actions” that caused the company’s collapse and says the FBI is investigating the matter. But the attorney declines to explain what the fraud was.

Some of Worley & Obetz’s laid-off employees sue the company, saying they were not told of the impending layoffs 60 days in advance, in violation of federal law.

June 21, 2018: Seth Obetz changes plans, partners with Shipley Energy to start Seth Energy.

June 28, 2018: Local investors announce plans to buy and reopen Worley & Obetz's Ranck Plumbing Heating AC.

July 18, 2018: In a bankruptcy court filing, Fulton Bank accuses Lyons of committing a "massive" fraud.

Fulton Financial, parent of Fulton Bank, says it lost $29.1 million on its $48 million loan to Worley & Obetz.

Aug. 27, 2018: Lyons and former Worley & Obetz controller Karen Connelly are charged by local police with a scheme to let Lyons put $1 million in personal expenses on company credit cards.

Sept. 18, 2018: Rhoads Energy agrees to buy Worley & Obetz's propane, HVAC and natural gas businesses.

Oct. 17, 2018: Bankruptcy trustee alleges Lyons, Connelly and her successor Judith Avilez conspired to put $2 billion in fake business on Worley & Obetz's books, so the firm could borrow more money, which he tapped to buy real estate.

Nov. 20, 2018: Molly's convenience store in Manheim, formerly run by Worley & Obetz, reopens under new ownership.

Dec. 28, 2018: Shipley Energy buys Worley & Obetz's home heating oil business.

March 8, 2019: Schwanger Bros. buys Worley & Obetz's gasoline stations.

June 29, 2019: In a bankruptcy court settlement, Lyons agrees to give up his share of his home, vacation house and certificate of deposit to resolve allegations that they were purchased with Worley & Obetz's funds.

Oct. 8, 2019: The U.S. Attorney's Office in Philadelphia announces Lyons, Connelly and Avilez have been charged with bank fraud and other offenses for allegedly giving false information about Worley & Obetz's finances to Fulton Bank, to convince the bank to loan more money to the firm.