If you’ve ever had your credit card information stolen, your bank probably alerted you about it after detecting an abnormal purchase, whether it was a Walmart splurge or a restaurant in another country.
On Monday, a Florida man was charged with essentially doing the same thing to the U.S. government, except instead of a credit card it was a PPP loan, and the unusual purchase was a Lamborghini Huracan supercar.
“A Florida man was arrested and charged with fraudulently obtaining $3.9 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and using those funds, in part, to purchase a sports car for himself,” the U.S. Department of Justice wrote in a news release. “Authorities seized a $318,000 sports car and $3.4 million from bank accounts at the time of arrest.”
Of course, the PPP loans are part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, and they have been essential in keeping small businesses afloat during the COVID-19 crisis — making 29-year-old David T. Hines, the Florida man in question, even more despicable than a normal person defrauding the government for luxury vehicles.
As the Daily Beast noted, “Hines allegedly requested $13.5 million in PPP loans on behalf of several companies and made several false claims regarding the companies’ payroll expenses in each application,” and once he received the partial sum of $3.9 million he “did not make payroll payments.” He did, however, also allegedly use the money to galavant at luxury retailers and resorts in Miami Beach.
The charges against Hines include “one count of bank fraud, one count of making false statements to a financial institution and one count of engaging in transactions in unlawful proceeds,” according to the Department of Justice.
Was the 600-horsepower joyride worth it, David?
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