Cook County watchdog says four employees fraudulently collected federal pandemic loans
Four Cook County employees committed “financial fraud directed at the federal government” by wrongly collecting roughly $120,000 in payroll protection plan loans intended to help businesses survive the pandemic, according to a report from the county’s inspector general.chicagotribune.com
Novi man convicted of fraud in COVID relief fund scheme totaling $4.1 million
DETROIT -- A Novi man accused of participating in a scheme to file several different fraudulent loan applications through programs designed to help businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic has been convicted by a federal jury on multiple charges. Johnny Ho, 41, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, two counts of wire fraud, and two counts of money laundering for hs role in the scheme. Those applications were filed on behalf of 16 different businesses, including by Ho himself who was the owner of Diva Nails & Spa III LLC in Northville. Ho submitted two fraudulent PPP and EIDL loan applications seeking nearly $350,000 in funds from the program. READ MORE:Michigan man bribed letter carriers for other people’s credit cards, stole COVID-19 unemployment benefitsMichigan couple sentenced in multi-million-dollar unemployment fraud schememlive.com
GOP candidate for governor Darren Bailey got $231,475 federal paycheck loan in February. A month later, he gave his campaign $150,000.
Illinois state Sen. Darren Bailey, a Republican candidate for governor, who has repeatedly criticized government coronavirus relief efforts, has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal paycheck loans during the pandemic.chicagotribune.com
South Florida Addiction Treatment Facility Operators Convicted in $112 Million Addiction Treatment Fraud Scheme
The defendants then shuffled a core group of patients between Compass Detox and WAR to fraudulently bill for as much as possible. Compass Detox patients were given a so-called “Comfort Drink” to sedate them, and to keep them coming back. “These health care fraudsters, driven by greed, sought to cheat their way to riches by billing tens of millions of dollars from various health care programs. Jonathan Markovich was convicted of eight counts of health care fraud and Daniel Markovich was convicted of two counts of health care fraud. They each face a maximum of 20 years for the health care fraud and wire fraud conspiracy count, 10 years for each substantive count of health care fraud and paying and receiving kickbacks, and five years for the kickbacks conspiracy.justice.gov
Man Pleads Guilty to Fraudulently Obtaining Approximately $9 Million in COVID-Relief Loans, Some of Which Was Gambled Away
In the course of the scheme, Marnell obtained seven PPP loans totaling just under $9 million from financial institutions for corporations he controlled. To obtain the loans, Marnell submitted fraudulent loan applications that made numerous false and misleading statements about the companies’ business operations and payroll expenses. Once the loans were funded, Marnell transferred millions of dollars from the fraudulently obtained loan proceeds to his brokerage accounts to make risky stock market bets. Marnell also spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in fraudulently obtained loan proceeds at various gambling establishments. The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Office of Inspector General, the FBI, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s Office of Inspector General, IRS-Criminal Investigation, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, and the Small Business Administration’s Office of Inspector General investigated this case.justice.gov
3 Metro Detroiters, 19 others charged in $11 million COVID payment protection fraud scheme
Three residents from Metro Detroit and 19 others across the country have been charged in connection with an $11 million fraud scheme centered around COVID-19 paycheck protection loans for businesses, feds said.
Michigan got $24 billion in PPP money – here’s who got the most
Michigan businesses took advantage. Nationwide, businesses received nearly 12 million PPP loans adding up to almost $800 billion. Michigan businesses accounted for about 300,000 loans for more than $24 billion, per federal data. In an SBAM survey of 617 Michigan small businesses, 91% received PPP money. Here’s the list of businesses that received PPP loans of $150,000 or less.mlive.com
Michigan man gets prison time for $590K COVID-19 fraud scheme
The PPP was set up to provide loans to small businesses to keep their workforces employed during COVID-19 pandemic. Baker pleaded guilty in September 2020 to one count of bank fraud arising from his effort to obtain the loan by defrauding Customers Bank, of Pennsylvania. He also pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering related to financial transactions with the fraudulently obtained funds. “This defendant’s actions caused the diversion of essential funds earmarked for legitimate businesses suffering due to the COVID-19 pandemic for his own personal gain. Baker withdrew about $172,000 of the $590,000 loan before his financial institution froze the remainder, which was later returned.mlive.com
California Man Arrested for $3.6 Million PPP and EIDL Loan Fraud
A California man was arrested Thursday on criminal charges related to his alleged scheming to submit fraudulent loan applications seeking millions of dollars in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) COVID-19 relief funds. The indictment alleges that Tran sought in excess of $8 million in PPP and EIDL funds, obtained over $3.6 million in illicit loan proceeds, and ultimately netted approximately $2 million from the scheme. Tran is charged with six counts of wire fraud and three counts of bank fraud. Trial Attorney Christopher Jackson of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Griswold of the Northern District of California are prosecuting the case. An indictment is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.justice.gov
Wisconsin businessman gets nearly 5 years in prison in $1 million COVID-19 relief money fraud: ‘You took advantage of our nation’s generosity’
According to prosecutors, Thomas Smith, 47, involved seven other people, including his brother, in a scheme to get federal funding for phantom companies.chicagotribune.com
Michigan couple accused of collecting payroll loans for employees that didn’t exist
LANSING, MI – A Michigan couple has been charged with several felonies after they allegedly submitted fraudulent loan applications to the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) to pay employees that didn’t exist. Ajagbe is accused of applying for and receiving $47,500 in PPP funds at the beginning of May 2020 after claiming in a loan application that he had eight employees and a monthly payroll of $19,000 connected to a company called Zuvan Technologies. State officials later learned there were no unemployment payroll withholdings for anyone associated with the company. Hall is accused of applying for $52,000 in PPP funds at the end of June 2020 on behalf of DND Global Marketing, claiming the company had a monthly payroll of $20,800 for 15 employees. Ajagbe is also accused of securing $49,165 in PPP funds for a third business, Mercury Financial Corp., despite the company dissolving in 2008.mlive.com
Miami man who bought Lamborghini with COVID-19 relief money sentenced to six years
A Miami businessman was sentenced to more than six years in prison Wednesday after pleading guilty to fleecing millions from a federal COVID-19 relief program and buying luxury items with the money, including a $318,000 Lamborghini Huracán Evo.news.yahoo.com
Suburban businessman suspected of using COVID-19 relief money to buy fleet of luxury cars
A west suburban businessman is under federal investigation for allegedly obtaining more than $1 million in COVID-19 relief loans and using much of the money to buy luxury and sports vehicles, unsealed court documents show.chicagotribune.com
Grand jury indicts 5 for fraudulently obtaining COVID-19 relief funds for personal use
GRAND RAPIDS, MI – A grand jury indicted five men for fraudulently obtaining money from the federal Payroll Protection Program (PPP) last summer, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Western Michigan announced Wednesday, April 7. Cash flow assistance is provided through federally guaranteed loans to employers who maintain their payroll during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mason and Kurbanov, both from the Grand Rapids area, used their “nonfunctional” companies - In a Minute Entertainment, LLC and Kurbanov Communications, LLC - to apply for PPP funds, officials say. Cartwright Jr., of Grand Rapids, is charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering and engaging in an illegal monetary transaction. Multiple federal agencies and local law enforcement investigated the fraud case including the FBI, Michigan State Police and the Grand Rapids Police Department.mlive.com
Newly Launched Metro-Detroit Black Business Alliance Advocates, Provides Resources To Black Small Businesses
President and CEO of the Metro-Detroit Black Business Alliance Charity Dean says, due to some disparities black businesses have been hit especially hard. In order to thrive, Dean says those business relationships are critical, so she and a group of Black business owners banned together to create the new Metro-Detroit Black Business Alliance. The goal for the alliance is not only to keep businesses afloat, Dean says, but to also create Black business legacies like Hot Sams clothing store in downtown Detroit. Stovall is the second generation owner of Hot Sam’s, a business her father purchased nearly 30 years ago. “If Black businesses really do thrive then everyone wins,” says Dean.detroit.cbslocal.com
Newly Launched Metro-Detroit Black Business Alliance Advocates For/Provide Resources To Black Small Businesses
(CBS DETROIT)- During the pandemic small businesses have suffered. President and CEO of the Metro-Detroit Black Business Alliance Charity Dean says, due to some disparities black businesses have been hit especially hard. “We’re going to be doing programing to connect black business owners with the things that they need we’re going to do deep dives into the disparities whether they’re in financial institutions or in other institutions. Dean says the goal for the alliance is not only to keep businesses afloat but to also create black business legacies like Hot Sams clothing store in Downtown Detroit. “It gives a testament again to the strong foundation of this business.” says Stovall“If Black businesses really do thrive then everyone wins.” Says DeanFor more information on MDBBA visit.detroit.cbslocal.com
How just a few days cost some small businesses thousands on their PPP forgivable loans
Foster applied for a second PPP loan as soon as she could this year and got about $5,250 the first week of March. Sarah Foster applied for a second draw PPP loan as soon as she could. Some are hoping that the slower process means they still have some wiggle room to go back and apply for larger loans under the new formula. Mike Kelly may be able to re-apply for a larger PPP loan and take advantage of the recently updated calculation formula for sole proprietors. Peggy Russo could've gotten nearly four times more forgivable funding if her latest PPP loan was calculated under new rules.cnbc.com
Four Additional Members of Los Angeles-Based Fraud Ring Indicted for Exploiting COVID-Relief Programs
Grigoryan, Hayrapetyan, and Paronyan were each also charged with 11 counts of wire fraud and eight counts of bank fraud. Vahe Dadyan was charged with six counts of wire fraud, three counts of bank fraud, and one count of money laundering. Richard Ayvazyan is charged with five counts of money laundering, and Tamara Dadyan is charged with one count of attempted bank fraud. EIDL proceeds can be used to cover a wide array of working capital and normal operating expenses, such as continuation of health care benefits, rent, utilities, and fixed-debt payments. The Fraud Section leads the Department of Justice’s prosecution of fraud schemes that exploit the CARES Act.justice.gov
Biden agrees to limit number of people who will get checks in Covid relief plan
President Joe Biden has backed a plan to cut the income caps for Americans to receive a direct payment as part of the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package set to pass in the coming days, a Democratic source said Wednesday. Under the lower chamber's bill, individuals making up to $100,000 (and joint filers earning up to $200,000) would have received some amount. Even more people are set to receive smaller payments than they would have under the House proposal, he added. Another estimate said roughly 12 million people could lose checks due to the policy change. Asked Wednesday about whether Biden supports the proposal, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said "he is comfortable with where the negotiations stand."cnbc.com
Biden to make it easier for smallest businesses to take out a PPP loan
Starting Wednesday, for a two-week period, only businesses with 20 employees or fewer will be able to apply for relief through the PPP program, Mr. Biden said in remarks Monday at the White House. Many of these businesses, he noted, had trouble obtaining relief in the early rounds of PPP, which was aimed at helping Americans keep their jobs. It handed out 5.2 million loans worth a total of $525 billion, helped many businesses stay on their feet, supporting some 51 million jobs. He pointed out that his plan "targets $50 billion to support the hardest hit small businesses after this program expires at the end of March." Without passage of the legislation, Mr. Biden said these small businesses would "continue to go under."cbsnews.com
Biden boosts pandemic lending to smallest businesses
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden announced changes Monday to target more federal pandemic assistance to the nation’s smallest businesses and ventures owned by women and people of color. Biden says a lot of these mom and pop businesses “got muscled out of the way” by larger businesses seeking federal money in the early days of the pandemic. "America’s small businesses are hurting, hurting badly and they need help now,” Biden said. Under the pandemic-era Paycheck Protection Program, the administration is establishing a two-week window, starting Wednesday, in which only businesses with fewer than 20 employees — the overwhelming majority of small businesses — can apply for the forgivable loans. The Biden effort is aimed at correcting disparities in how the program was administered by the Trump administration.
Man Charged with $5 Million COVID-Relief Fraud
Samuel Yates, 32, of Maud, was charged in an indictment with two counts of wire fraud. In the application submitted to the first lender, Yates allegedly sought $5 million in PPP loan proceeds by fraudulently claiming to have over 400 employees with an average monthly payroll of more than $2 million. In the second application, Yates claimed to employ over 100 individuals and was able to obtain a loan over $500,000. PPP loan proceeds must be used by businesses on payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. Trial Attorney Louis Manzo of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Criminal Chief Frank Coan and Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan R. Hornok for the Eastern District of Texas are prosecuting the case.justice.gov
Ann Arbor SPARK co-hosting virtual event on Paycheck Protection Program this evening
The advertiser paid a fee to promote this sponsored article and may have influenced or authored the content. ANN ARBOR – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) recently re-opened the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers. To help small business owners understand the eligibility requirements and application process, 20Fathoms and Ann Arbor SPARK are cohosting a webinar presented by Robert Scott, Regional Administrator for the SBA. “Robert Scott is the architect of the PPP which has been a lifeline to small businesses. “Hearing the details of the program directly from Scott will help these companies most effectively benefit from the support it can provide.”Event details:
Will restaurants survive winter with new loans from government?
Will restaurants survive winter with new loans from government? More than 100,000 U.S. restaurants have been killed off by the pandemic. Will the latest PPP loans for small businesses be enough to save the struggling survivors this winter? CBS MoneyWatch reporter Megan Cerullo tells CBSN why even more eateries could go under.cbsnews.com
Will restaurants survive winter with new loans from U.S. government?
100,000 restaurants already goneThe coronavirus has already forced the permanent closure of more than 100,000 restaurants across the U.S., with more anticipated shutterings on the way as the pandemic persists. The closures represent nearly 17% of all U.S. restaurants, according to a study from the National Restaurant Association. Colorado restaurateur Bobby Stuckey, who owns four restaurants in Boulder and Denver, said the program is not a good fit for his restaurants. She applied for, but didn't receive a PPP loan the first time around. Not even a PPP loan would have saved the establishment, Jaafari said.cbsnews.com
Restaurants grateful for new round of aid but still fighting for additional relief
This round of PPP has a few differences from the one earlier this year. The last round capped individual loans at $10 million, and the maximum amount this time for eligible businesses is $2 million. The restaurant-specific elements of the relief bill include enhanced PPP loan limits, which allows restaurants to seek forgivable loans up to 3.5 times their monthly payroll costs whereas other businesses are capped at 2.5; and enhanced access to PPP, which allows restaurants with fewer than 300 employees per location to qualify for PPP. The relief bill also allows several tax breaks. More information can be found on the Restaurants Act website.chicagotribune.com
Op-ed: The financial outlook for the Hispanic small business community in 2021
That means that there is underlying strength in the Latino business community that can help in their emergence from the ravages of Covid-19. The 2019-2020 period was, in some ways, a record-breaking year for Latino entrepreneurs, buoyed by the strength in the general economy. And despite the improving revenue numbers, average Latino business revenues were still $96,000 lower than White-owned businesses', underscoring the challenges that lie ahead. Only 6.7% of Hispanic business owners report they are profitable and growing vs. over 14% of the general business owner population. The path forward for Latino entrepreneurs rests on a variety of factors, some which touch on public policy, government intervention, and societal forces.cnbc.com
There are more than 221,000 PPP stories in Illinois. Some small businesses got millions. One got $73.
The PPP offered businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 500 employees forgivable loans of up to $10 million, if at least 60% of the money went toward payroll. Larger companies received the lion’s share of the money, while millions of smaller beneficiaries got far less — all the way down to $1, according to data released Tuesday by the SBA.chicagotribune.com
In Illinois, more than one-third of PPP funds, meant for small businesses, went to larger companies that got loans of $1M or more. Search the SBA list.
One wrinkle in the forgiveness process is a ruling last month by the IRS that businesses cannot take common deductions for expenses such as payroll and rent if they are paid for with proceeds from PPP loans rather than normal income.chicagotribune.com
Florida Recording Artist and Pennsylvania Man Charged for Role in $24 Million COVID-Relief Fraud Scheme
Diamond Blue Smith, 36, of Miramar, Florida, and Tonye C. Johnson, 28, of Flourtown, Pennsylvania, were charged in federal criminal complaints filed in the Southern District of Florida with wire fraud, bank fraud, and conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud. Smith, a recording artist, is alleged to have obtained a PPP loan of $426,717 for his company, Throwbackjersey.com LLC, using falsified documents. Smith allegedly purchased a Ferrari for $96,000 and made other luxury purchases using PPP loan proceeds. Johnson is alleged to have obtained a PPP loan of $389,627 for his own company, Synergy Towing & Transport LLC, using falsified documents. PPP loan proceeds must be used by businesses on payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities.justice.gov
New deal maintains Michigan budget for now; big concerns for next year
LANSING, Mich. – Billions of dollars from the federal government have helped keep Michigan afloat amid financial hardships caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. With the federal government’s help, two of the major traditional budget concerns in Michigan -- K-12 schools and local revenue sharing -- will not take any cuts. House Appropriations Chairman Shane Hernandez tells Local 4 News that the federal government bought Michigan some time. “They bought us time to understand COVID, understand how we deal with it and open our businesses and schools," Hernandez said. Hernandez believes that Michigan businesses cannot afford to operate under such heavy restrictions much longer.
Loan program ends, hard-hit businesses hope for 2nd chance
Small businesses are in limbo again as the coronavirus outbreak rages and the governments $659 billion relief program draws to a close. Congress is debating further help for small business as part of a broader coronavirus relief package. For example, the 50% requirement will leave out many small businesses, says Sean Kennedy, an executive vice president at the industry group National Restaurant Association. With the economy struggling, Koleas business is still down, and having spent all his loan money, hes hoping for a second loan. Krigman laid off staffers and rehired them when she got a PPP loan, but that money has been spent.
Small business program scrutinized for loans to big firms
The PPP offered loans up to $10 million to companies with fewer than 500 employees. The most appealing aspect of the program: possible loan forgiveness if most of the money was spent on workers. But when the loans were first proposed, lawmakers described them as a rescue for small businesses and their employees. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin soon said the government would audit loans above $2 million, though some experts have their doubts. Aliera Companies, a private equity firm specializing in healthcare, got a $5 million to $10 million loan.
Sports jumps on PPP bandwagon, but big leagues take a pass
However, none of the four major North American sports leagues the NFL, NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball were among the businesses that applied, according to the data. The data showed businesses that applied for and received loans, though some may not ultimately have taken the funds. An AP survey completed in May found 32 U.S. Olympic sports organizations about 70% of all federations had applied for PPP loans. With their seasons shut down, more than a dozen minor league baseball teams turned up on the PPP rolls. The Big South Conference, Conference USA, Southland Conference and Big Sky Conference all listed less than two dozen full-time employees, according to the data.
Fed's program for loaning to Main Street off to slow start
In the months ahead, Main Street loans may prove a valuable resource for firms that were in sound financial condition prior to the pandemic, Powell said. Companies with up to 15,000 employees or $5 billion in revenue are eligible for Main Street. The Fed has said it will purchase up to $600 billion in Main Street loans from banks. Main Street loans currently have a rate slightly above 3%. Haith, meanwhile, said the interest rate on a Main Street loan is much lower than he would typically expect to pay, even in a healthy economy.
Most publicly listed companies keep U.S. small-business aid loans
REUTERS/Carlos BarriaNEW YORK/BOSTON (Reuters) - More than four-fifths of publicly listed companies that received emergency small-business loans from the U.S. government have held onto them, sticking with a certification that they need the money, according to data from market research firm FactSquared. Sixty-eight companies returned $435.8 million in loans, out of a total of 424 public companies that were granted loans totaling $1.35 billion, based on a review of corporate filings by FactSquared as of May 22. Some 76 public companies that took PPP loans and have not said they will return them had enough cash and cash equivalents to cover operating costs until at least June, according to a Reuters analysis, which was based on companies most recent earnings and companies tracked by FactSquared. Of those companies, 22 received loans of at least $2 million. The PPP program has drawn criticism from small-business owners and politicians for allowing access to public companies, given their easier access to capital markets.feeds.reuters.com
Software Engineer Charged in Washington with COVID-Relief Fraud
Baoke Zhang, 35, of Issaquah, Washington, was charged in a federal criminal complaint filed in the Western District of Washington with wire fraud and bank fraud. Allegedly, Zhang provided lenders with fraudulent IRS documentation purporting to show federal tax withholdings for a sole proprietorship in his name for 25 employees. Zhang allegedly also provided fraudulent IRS documentation purporting to show federal tax withholdings for 20 employees for a limited liability company he created. Zhang allegedly provided falsified documentation purporting to show that an EIN for the second company had been assigned in 2018. Zhang also allegedly provided the lender with a bank statement purporting to show that the company had disbursed payroll payments in December 2019.justice.gov
Hollywood Film Producer Charged with $1.7 Million COVID-Relief Fraud
A California man has been charged with allegedly filing bank loan applications fraudulently seeking more than $1.7 million dollars in forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. When an individual cheats the Paycheck Protection Program out of money, it deprives hard-working Americans and deserving small businesses. Sadleir allegedly used three entities he controlled to obtain over $1.7 million in PPP loans guaranteed by the SBA for COVID-19 relief. PPP loan proceeds must be used by businesses on payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. The Justice Department acknowledges and thanks the FBI, the SBA OIG, and the FDIC OIG for their efforts investigating this mater.justice.gov
More than half of small businesses are looking to have PPP funds forgiven, survey says
The National Federation of Independent Business reports that 80% of small business owners surveyed applied for a PPP loan, and of those who applied 90% received funding. Borrowers report requirements are challenging to either comply with or to meet in order to qualify for maximum loan forgiveness. Nearly three-fourths of small business borrowers find the terms and conditions of the PPP loan difficult to understand with 22% finding them very difficult," the report said. These changes also align with conditions on the ground," said Karen Kerrigan, president and CEO of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council. "A one-size-fits-all PPP program does not work things have changed tremendously since the design of the program in early to mid-March."cnbc.com
Proposed RESTAURANTS Act could help Detroit's dining scene weather the coronavirus
Gretchen Whitmer has authorized in parts of Northern Michigan on Friday , they'll be operating at a lower capacity. On Wednesday, Democratic Rep. Earl Blumenauer, of Oregon, announced the Real Economic Support That Acknowledges Unique Restaurant Assistance Needed to Survive Act, or the RESTAURANTS Act. The measure would create a $120 billion grant program that would give small restaurants cash to stay open through the rest of the year at a limited capacity.Unlike the PPP, RESTAURANTS Act funds wouldn't need to be paid back. The funds would be available until the end of 2020, and would cover a restaurants difference between revenue from 2019 and the anticipated revenue through 2020, capped at $10 million. Unlike the PPP, the funds wouldn't need to be spent on payroll; they could be used for mortgage, rent, debts, or cleaning supplies.metrotimes.com
Texas Man Charged with $5 Million COVID-Relief Fraud
A Texas man has been charged in the Eastern District of Texas with allegedly filing bank loan applications fraudulently seeking more than $5 million dollars in forgivable loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Yates is charged by way of a federal criminal complaint with violations of wire fraud, bank fraud, false statements to a financial institution, and false statements to the SBA. SBA OIG and its law enforcement partners are poised to root out wrongdoers in the Paycheck Protection Program and maintain its integrity. Trial Attorney Louis Manzo of the Criminal Divisions Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank Coan for the Eastern District of Texas are prosecuting the case. The Justice Department acknowledges and thanks the SBA Office of Inspector General, and U.S.justice.gov
Engineer Charged in Texas with COVID-Relief Fraud
Rai is charged by way of a federal criminal complaint with violations of wire fraud, bank fraud, false statements to a financial institution, and false statements to the SBA. When an individual cheats the Paycheck Protection Program out of money, it deprives hard-working Americans and deserving small businesses. The CARES Act is a federal law enacted on March 29, 2020, designed to provide emergency financial assistance to the millions of Americans who are suffering the economic effects caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Assistant Chief L. Rush Atkinson and Trial Attorney Lou Manzo of the Criminal Divisions Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank Coan for the Eastern District of Texas are prosecuting the case. The Justice Department acknowledges and thanks the FHFA Office of Inspector General, FDIC Office of Inspector General, SBA Office of Inspector General, and U.S.justice.gov
Reality TV Personality Charged with Bank Fraud
A reality TV personality who stars in Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta, has been arrested on federal bank fraud charges arising from a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan that he obtained in the name of Flame Trucking. Maurice Fayne, aka Arkansas Mo, 37, of Dacula, Georgia, was charged with bank fraud and made his initial appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Justin S. Anand. On May 6, 2020, Fayne was interviewed by federal agents and admitted that he submitted a PPP loan application on behalf of Flame Trucking. Agents also executed seizure warrants for three bank accounts that Fayne owned or controlled and seized approximately $503,000 in PPP funds. PPP loan proceeds must be used by businesses on payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities.justice.gov
Fear and desperation on Main Street as small businesses struggle to survive despite PPP and other federal loan programs
Lia Hakim, owner, Totally Hott Salon Lia HakimMany small business owners are in a similar predicament. Although some of the money was disbursed to small businesses, the PPP ran out of the $349 billion in funds allocated by April 16. Those who didn't get CARES Act funding are scrambling to use whatever resources they can find to stay in business. Only 45% of small businesses who polled in the CNBC|Survey Monkey Small Business Survey conducted from April 21-27 said they applied. Advances from the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, another component of the CARES Act, were also slow to arrive.cnbc.com
Small business loans are not going proportionately to the hardest-hit areas, Fed study shows
"In New York, the epicenter of the coronavirus in the United States, less than 20 percent of small businesses have been approved to receive PPP loans. For its study, the New York Fed used the number of coronavirus cases in a given state as a proxy to track changes in the economic impact of Covid-19 across the country. Source: Federal Reserve Bank of New YorkThe findings will likely fuel a principal complaint about the Small Business Administration's program. "It seems therefore that medium-sized and small banks, including community banks, are important in channeling PPP funding." The Fed economists found that there appears to be a strong correlation between a state's percentage of small businesses that received bank financing in 2019 and the state's percentage of small businesses that have now received PPP loans.cnbc.com
Are you having second thoughts about that PPP loan? You have until May 14 to pay it back
Since then, approximately 2.2 million loans have been made to applicants, adding up to more than $175 billion, according to the Small Business Administration. Small businesses aren't the only ones who participated, however. Private companies with "adequate sources of liquidity to support the business's ongoing operations" must also consider whether they really needed the PPP loan and should return the money. Small businesses and CPAs assisting them are still uncertain on what "adequate sources of liquidity" means. When he took the loan, his business looked solid, but he could be in dire straits in three weeks."cnbc.com