A tech company executive in Washington State is now facing Federal felony charges over allegations by investigators that he attempted to obtain more than $5.5 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans for which he was not legally eligible.
The 48-year-old man was arrested last week on the strength of a complaint filed by Federal authorities saying he filed at least 8 applications for PPP loans based upon claims that were untrue. In order to support the allegedly fraudulent applications, investigators claim he gave loan administrators several false and misleading statements about his financial situation.
In addition to allegedly false oral statements, federal prosecutors say the man submitted a series of fake documents, including tax filings and falsified corporate documents. On one document the defendant allegedly indicated that his firm had several employees to whom his business paid millions of dollars of salary, and that his business was incorporated in 2018. However, evidence suggests that the defendant purchased the business over the Internet in May, and the entity had no business activities and no employees at the time applied for the PPP loan.
At the time the alleged fraud was discovered, investigators say he transferred around a quarter million dollars of the loan proceeds to his personal account for his own use.
The defendant was charged in the chambers of U.S. Chief Magistrate Judge Brian A. Tsuchida of the Western District of Washington with with one count of wire fraud and one count of money laundering. He was scheduled to make a first appearance in the case last week as well.