NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A Coppell man has been indicted for fraud and money laundering after he allegedly spent more than $17 million in Paycheck Protection Program loan money on lavish personal expenses.
Dinesh Sah, 55, now faces three counts of wire fraud, three counts of bank fraud and one count of money laundering.READ MORE: North Texas Health Departments, Pharmacies Making Plans To Vaccinate Children Against COVID-19
“Mr. Sah exploited this terrible pandemic for personal gain – and he should be held accountable to the American people for that behavior,” said U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox. “COVID-19 has devastated the finances of hardworking business owners across the nation. PPP funds should be reserved for those who really need them to keep their companies afloat.”
According to the indictment, Sah allegedly submitted 15 fraudulent loan applications, filed under the names of various purported businesses that he owned or controlled, to eight different lenders seeking more than $24 million in PPP loans.READ MORE: Dallas ISD To Start New School That Mixes Learning In Classroom And Online
In his applications, Sah allegedly claimed that the businesses had numerous employees and hundreds of thousands of dollars in payroll expenses – when, in fact, he had created many of the businesses after the CARES Act was enacted, and no business had employees or paid wages consistent with the amounts claimed in the applications.
Officials say Sah ultimately received approximately $17.7 million in funds and allegedly used the proceeds for personal expenses, including spending the cash on multiple homes and luxury cars, including a 2020 Bentley convertible.
“Mr. Sah looked at the Paycheck Protection Program as his own personal piggy bank, treating himself to not only millions in cash, but several luxury vehicles and properties, all while legitimate small business owners in the United States desperately sought out ways to put food on their tables and to ensure their employees were paid,” said IRS Special Agent Tamera Cantu.MORE NEWS: Fort Worth Mayoral Runoff Candidates Discuss Policy Differences At Forum
To date, the government has seized more than $6.5 million in fraudulent proceeds that Sah obtained during the scheme.