Article: Owner Of Carlisle Area Trucking Business Charged With Covid-Relief Fraud

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Owner Of Carlisle Area Trucking Business Charged With Covid-Relief Fraud

Department of Justice, 04 June 2021

HARRISBURG- The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that Keith McConnell, age 43, of Carlisle, Pennsylvania, was charged by criminal information with perpetrating a wire fraud and money laundering scheme that sought $467,200.00 in COVID-19 relief funds guaranteed by the U.S. Small Business Administration through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

The PPP was designed to help small businesses facing financial difficulties during the COVID-19 pandemic. Funded by the March 27, 2020 Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, PPP funds were offered in forgivable loans to small businesses for employee job retention and certain other expenses. PPP loan amounts were determined by the number of employees and average monthly payroll costs. Continue reading “Article: Owner Of Carlisle Area Trucking Business Charged With Covid-Relief Fraud”

Article: FBI probing federal contractor’s donations to Sen. Collins’ campaign

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FBI probing federal contractor’s donations to Sen. Collins’ campaign

Dennis Hoey, Portland Press Herald, Maine, 19 May 2021

A Department of Defense contractor with ties to Maine is under investigation by the U.S. government for allegedly making illegal contributions to Sen. Susan Collins’ 2020 re-election campaign.

An FBI search warrant in the investigation names Martin Kao and Clifford Chen. Kao is the former president and CEO of Hawaii-based Navatek — now known as Martin Defense Group — and Chen was Navatek’s chief financial officer at the time the contributions were made. The contractor is based in Honolulu and has offices in Maine, Washington, D.C., Rhode Island, Michigan, Oklahoma, Kansas and South Carolina.

Kao and Chen are accused of making illegal contributions of about $45,000 to Collins’ re-election campaign and $150,000 to the independently operated 1820 PAC, which supported the Republican’s re-election bid. Donations of that nature constitute violations of federal law that prohibit federal contractors from making political contributions, according to FBI Special Agent Michelle Ball, who filed an application for a search warrant on April 7. The warrant, which had to be executed before April 21, was authorized by U.S. Magistrate Judge G. Michael Harvey. Continue reading “Article: FBI probing federal contractor’s donations to Sen. Collins’ campaign”

Article: Irvine Man Arrested on Federal Grand Jury Indictment Alleging He Fraudulently Obtained $5 Million in COVID-Relief PPP Loans

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Irvine Man Arrested on Federal Grand Jury Indictment Alleging He Fraudulently Obtained $5 Million in COVID-Relief PPP Loans

Department of Justice, 07 May 2021

SANTA ANA, California – An Orange County man was arrested today on federal charges alleging he fraudulently obtained approximately $5 million in Payment Protection Program (PPP) loans for his sham businesses, then used the money on himself, including purchasing Ferrari, Bentley and Lamborghini sports cars.

Mustafa Qadiri, 38, of Irvine, was named in a federal grand jury indictment returned Wednesday charging him with four counts of bank fraud, four counts of wire fraud, one count of aggravated identity theft, and six counts of money laundering.

Qadiri surrendered to law enforcement this morning and is expected to make his initial appearance this afternoon in United States District Court in Santa Ana. Continue reading “Article: Irvine Man Arrested on Federal Grand Jury Indictment Alleging He Fraudulently Obtained $5 Million in COVID-Relief PPP Loans”

Article: The Number One Threat To Global Finance? Cyber Attacks

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The Number One Threat To Global Finance? Cyber Attacks

PYMNTS, 13 April 2021

Cyberattacks are the greatest threat to the world’s financial system, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said in an interview with CBS News this week. Speaking to “60 Minutes” on Sunday (April 11), Powell said the risks posed by cybercriminals are greater than the lending and liquidity troubles that triggered the 2008 financial crisis.

“There are scenarios in which a large financial institution would lose the ability to track the payments that it’s making, where you would have a part of the financial system come to a halt, or perhaps even a broad part,” he said. “And so, we spend so much time and energy and money guarding against these things. There are cyberattacks every day on all major institutions now. That’s a big part of the threat picture in today’s world.” Continue reading “Article: The Number One Threat To Global Finance? Cyber Attacks”

Article: Fraudsters Siphon $100 Million In COVID Relief Through Online Investment Platforms

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Fraudsters Siphon $100 Million In COVID Relief Through Online Investment Platforms

PYMNTS, 30 March 2021


Scammers stealing from government-funded pandemic relief programs have found a new trick — opening accounts with at least four online investment platforms, CNBC reported Monday (March 29).

Law enforcement officials say digital platforms are an easy way to dump money into stolen identity accounts.

Authorities say over $100 million in fraudulent funds reportedly passed through investment accounts in the time since Congress passed the CARES Act last March.

Among the platforms allegedly used by thieves are Robinhood, TD Ameritrade, E-Trade and Fidelity, according to law enforcement.

“The thieves are loving this stuff. This has been the financial crime bonanza act of 2021,” said Charles Intriago, a money-laundering expert and former federal prosecutor, according to CNBC. Continue reading “Article: Fraudsters Siphon $100 Million In COVID Relief Through Online Investment Platforms”

Article: COVID FRAUDSTERS ARE NOW TARGETING INVESTMENT PLATFORMS

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COVID FRAUDSTERS ARE NOW TARGETING INVESTMENT PLATFORMS

Jacob Wolinsky,  30 March 2021

CNBC’s Senior Washington Correspondent Eamon Javers reports on covid fraudsters that are stealing people’s identities to open up investment accounts with apps like Robinhood to hide the source of their funds. A law enforcement official told CNBC that at least four investment platforms are being targeted by criminals. The digital platforms, investigators said, are easy to dump the money into by setting up accounts with stolen identities and more than $100 million in fraudulent funds passed through investment accounts since Congress passed the CARES Act last March, according to authorities.

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Article: Feds spotlight Miami as capital of COVID-19 fraud, from business to employee benefits

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Feds spotlight Miami as capital of COVID-19 fraud, from business to employee benefits

JAY WEAVER,  26 March 2021

A year ago, Congress agreed to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on benefits for small businesses and employees devastated by the coronavirus pandemic.

Of course, the government’s handout helped the struggling economy. But it also opened the door for a menagerie of con artists to fleece the federal relief program to get rich quick.

Among them: a South Florida man alleged to have bought a Lamborghini for $318,000 with millions in COVID-19 relief loans; a Broward County tax preparer who purportedly pocketed huge commissions for filing $28 million worth of phony business loan applications; and a former NFL player from Miami accused of stealing people’s identities to collect $300,000 in unemployment insurance benefits. Continue reading “Article: Feds spotlight Miami as capital of COVID-19 fraud, from business to employee benefits”