Defending Against Texas DWI Charges: Strategies to Protect Your Rights
Facing driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges in Texas can be a distressing and overwhelming experience. A DWI conviction cRead More
The CARES Act has benefited many Americans, particularly those with small businesses who needed a little boost during the pandemic. The Economic Injury Disaster Loan program in the CARES Act specifically helped to provide relief for small organizations and businesses that would have collapsed under the global strain of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The EIDL program was a success that offered financial relief to many. Unfortunately, people have abused this program. The FBI is cracking down on those who have taken advantage of the loans and committed fraud.
If you received an EIDL loan and are currently being investigated for fraud or worry you might be, it’s essential to understand what that can mean for your future. Read on to learn more about EIDL loan fraud and the penalties that can result if a person is found guilty of it.
The EIDL program helps small businesses recover from COVID by making borrower-friendly capital accessible. These low-interest loans are fixed-rate and long-term, set up by the Small Business Administration. This financial assistance is to help businesses overcome the negative impact of the pandemic and stay afloat.
EIDL loans require repayment. Which makes them different from Paycheck Protection Program loans that allow for loan forgiveness. However, EIDL did allow payment deferments for the first two years of the loan.
The EIDL loans dispersed were for up to $2 million in some cases, so it was for relatively large sums of money. These loans helped businesses to cover payroll, maintain operations, and meet their obligations to stay open. So far, the SBA has reported that about $600 million got recovered from fraudulent loans.
According to the SBA, EIDL fraud occurs in a variety of ways, such as:
Since the EIDL loan program rolled out during an emergency, some of the controls traditionally placed on these programs were loosened or even discarded in some instances. As a result, many took advantage of this loophole and the program. Many individuals were able to obtain loans without any verification required. The government relied on self-report and didn’t even ask for supporting documentation of income from 2019.
If you have paid attention to the news, you’ll find that some people used the loans they received through the CARES Act to buy personal luxuries such as homes, boats, cars, and costly jewelry – indeed, not the intended purpose of the funds.
If a person lied about their income or submitted false documentation, they can be liable now that the FBI is looking closer at the applications. It’s essential to understand that even if the funds are utilized for business purposes, it’s still fraud to misrepresent a business to qualify for a higher loan.
The bottom line is that misrepresenting income on a loan application for the EIDL program can subject a person to numerous federal criminal charges.
Submitting an application with inaccurate information to the bank is considered bank fraud.
Having money acquired fraudulently to your bank via a wire transfer is considered wire fraud.
Sending applications or documents through the U.S. Postal Service can result in mail fraud charges.
The use of the identity of another to apply for an EIDL loan is considered identity theft.
The charges mentioned above would be at the federal level for EIDL loan fraud. They can subject a person to potentially severe penalties under the law.
If you are found guilty of bank fraud, wire fraud, or mail fraud, you can be sentenced to up to 30 years of incarceration and be responsible for $1 million in fines for each charge.
Identity theft is also punishable by as many as 30 years in prison and fines of $1 million. Still, the judge can also hand down additional penalties, such as a minimum mandatory sentence that runs consecutively to other convictions.
If accused of EIDL loan fraud, you need an attorney as soon as possible. They can help guide you through the process and will ensure that you receive a robust defense and that your rights are protected.
The client believed to be facing potential Wire Fraud Charges related to SBA PPP loan applications. Investigation of applications for PPP loans and PPP forgiveness demonstrated that the Client had at all times acted in a lawful manner. Investigation demonstrated no fraud was committed by the client. Case closed.
Client was charged by Federal Indictment with making a social media post that threatened Malicious Damage and Destruction of a Building by Means of Fire and Explosives in violation of Federal law. The Defense showed that Client was a law-abiding citizen. The Defense further showed that the alleged threat was not made with any criminal intent.
The client, a public official with a long history of public service, was accused by a former girlfriend of engaging in non-consensual sexual relations. The Defense investigation and analysis showed through a detailed timeline that the allegation made absolutely no sense. Phone records, including calls and texts, were relied on to help establish an accurate timeline. The Defense met with law enforcement and reviewed a detailed package that exonerated the accused.
Client, a Houston area professional who frequently travels for work, was accused by his wife of assaulting her in his family home. Defense showed that wife’s story lacked credibility and there was no physical evidence in support of the wife’s allegation.
The client, a young Black male, was driving his car when police pulled him over for no apparent reason. It looked to be a profile stop. The client was accused of possessing a controlled substance in his vehicle. The Defense showed that there was no lawful basis for the police to stop the Client’s car. The Defense also showed that there was no lawful basis for the search of the Client’s car. It was a bad search, so the seized evidence was not admissible.
Client charged in Federal Indictment In “Operation Wrecking Ball” with 55 named co-defendants. Client faced seven charges. Client was charged with Conspiracy to Distribute Cocaine and Conspiracy to Engage in Money Laundering. Client was also charged with four counts of Distribution of Cocaine and one count of Money laundering.
Allegations involved client’s alleged use of his home to distribute cocaine. Government’s lengthy investigation involved numerous wiretaps, surveillance, video, pole cams, search warrants, vehicle stops and use of cooperating co-defendants.
Client went to trial with four remaining defendants. After a two-week trial, Judge granted Motion for Acquittal on four of the seven charges. Jury found Client Not Guilty of remaining three charges.
Client charged in Federal Court with two counts of Wire Fraud related to Five SBA EIDL loan applications. The Government alleged the client, a Houston professional, defrauded the Small Business Administration out of over $150,000. The Government also found the intended loss was over half a million dollars. The Client faced up to 20 years in prison on each count. The Defense investigated the case and negotiated a deal that included the Government not opposing a probation. The Federal Guideline calculation was for a prison sentence and the Probation Department recommended a prison sentence. Attorney Fickman submitted a 90 page Defense Sentencing Memorandum asking for Probation.
Client was retired professional. Client was accused of being involved in a road rage incident in 1960 Area. Defense put together a 100 page memorandum that demonstrated complainant was actual aggressor.
Client was accused of touching child. Case involved thousands of pages of psychiatric and Child Protective Services records as well as investigations by multiple police departments. After three- year fight, case dismissed.
Client accused of shoving and knocking down family member causing injury. After investigation, charges were dismissed.
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