Indian Individuals plead responsible to $ 24 million COVID aid program rip-off: The Tribune India

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Indian-American pleads guilty to US$ 24 million COVID relief scheme fraud

Washington, March 26th

An Indian-American man from Texas pleaded guilty to $ 24 million in COVID19 aid fraud, the U.S. Department of Justice said.

According to court records, 55-year-old Dinesh Sah admitted that he had filed 15 fraudulent claims filed with eight different lenders under the names of various alleged companies he owned or controlled, the loans totaling around 24.8 $ Million applied for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

Sah claimed that these companies had numerous employees and hundreds of thousands of dollars in labor costs, when in fact no company had employees or paid wages that matched the amounts reported on the PPP applications.

According to the court documents, Sah also admitted that he had submitted fraudulent documents in support of his claims, including falsified tax returns and bank statements for the alleged companies, and falsely listed others as agents of certain of these companies without the authority to use their identifying information the applications.

“When the nation was crippled by a global pandemic, Sah fraudulently received over $ 17 million in PPP funds to help legitimate small businesses and spent that money on luxury cars and multiple homes,” said Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L McQuaid of the Department of Justice Criminal Investigation on Thursday.

“As our nation continues to fight this unprecedented virus, the Department of Justice and its law enforcement partners continue to seek to aggressively prosecute those who take advantage of COVID relief programs and ensure that these illicit profits are returned,” he said.

In his pledge of guilt, Sah admitted that because of his false statements and fabricated documents, he had received over $ 17 million in PPP loan funds and diverted the proceeds for his personal benefit to buy several homes in Texas and repay the mortgages Buy a fleet of luxury cars, including a Bentley convertible, Corvette Stingray, and a Porsche Macan.

Saw also sent millions in PPP proceeds for international money transfers. As part of his guilty plea, Sah agreed to forfeit eight homes, numerous luxury vehicles, and more than $ 7.2 million in fraudulent receipts by the government to date. PTI