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A South Florida man has been sentenced to six years in prison after fraudulently obtaining nearly $4 million in federal loans meant for small businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and spending it on personal expenses, including a Lamborghini.
Authorities said Hines requested approximately $13.5 million in Paycheck Protection Program loans using false and fraudulent IRS forms early last year. He successfully secured $3.9 million from the federal government and within a few days he began blowing the money on personal expenses, including on a 2020 Lamborghini Huracan for $318,000.
The money also went to dating websites, jewelry and stays at a local resort. Two payments totaling $30,000 were also documented as going to “mom,” according to the criminal complaint.
The sports car and $3.4 million were ultimately seized following an investigation into the scam, authorities said.
Hines’ Lamborghini purchase was discovered by investigators after he was involved in a hit-and-run accident involving the vehicle back in July. The Lamborghini was linked back to Hines and impounded by Miami police, the Miami Herald previously reported.
PPP loan scams are unfortunately nothing new, with a Southern California man arrested on Friday after allegedly obtaining roughly $5 million in PPP loans and spending a portion of the money on Ferrari, Bentley and Lamborghini sports cars, federal prosecutors said.
The Justice Department in March said it has criminally charged hundreds of people with violations related to the PPP or Economic Injury Disaster Loan programs. A memo released by House Democrats that same month, citing the Justice Department, tallied 173 criminal cases involving 242 defendants for such violations. The PPP charges amounted to $446.8 million in losses.
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