California man accused of using COVID-19 loans to buy Ferrari – fr

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California man accused of using COVID-19 loans to buy Ferrari – fr


IRVINE, CALIFORNIA. – Southern California man pleaded not guilty to charges he secured $ 5 million in federal coronavirus relief loans for phony businesses, then used that money for lavish vacations and to buy a Ferrari , a Bentley and a Lamborghini, prosecutors said Monday.

Mustafa Qadiri, 38, was arrested last week on suspicion of conspiring to defraud the Paycheck Protection Program, which was implemented last year to help struggling small businesses during the COVID pandemic -19.

Qadiri, of Irvine, pleaded not guilty on Friday to several counts, including bank fraud, wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and money laundering, according to the U.S. prosecutor’s office. Qadiri’s lawyer, Bilal A. Essayli, declined to comment on Monday.

Prosecutors said Qadiri submitted fraudulent PPP loan applications to three banks on behalf of four companies that did not actually exist. The requests included changed bank documents, false income tax returns and false employee information, according to the indictment.

Qadiri also used someone else’s name, social security number and signature to fraudulently apply for one of the loans, prosecutors said.

He received $ 5 million in loans that investigators said he used to pay for travel, sports cars and personal expenses.

Federal agents seized Ferrari, Bentley and Lamborghini cars purchased by Qadiri, as well as $ 2 million in his bank accounts, prosecutors said.

U.S. District Judge Josephine L. Staton has scheduled a jury trial on June 29. Qadiri was released on bail of US $ 100,000.

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