MIAMI, Fl. (CW69 News at 10) – A Florida man pled guilty to fraudulently acquiring approximately $3.9 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and using those funds, in part, to buy a $318,000 Lamborghini sports car for himself, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s office.
David T. Hines, 29, of Miami pled guilty to one count of wire fraud and is scheduled to be sentenced on April 14. Authorities seized the Lamborghini and $3.4 million from Hines bank accounts.READ MORE: Tax Refund Delays Grow As Filing Deadline Gets Closer
As part of his guilty plea, Hines admitted that he fraudulently sought millions of dollars in PPP loans through applications to an insured financial institution on behalf of different companies. Hines submitted fraudulent loan applications that made numerous false and misleading statements about the companies’ respective payroll expenses. The financial institution approved and funded approximately $3.9 million in PPP loans.READ MORE: Panic-Buying Causes Temporary Shutdown Of Several Bay Area Gas Stations
Hines further admitted that within days of receiving the PPP funds, he used the funds to purchase a 2020 Lamborghini Huracan sports car for approximately $318,000. Plea documents indicate that in the days and weeks following the disbursement of PPP funds, Hines did not make payroll payments that he claimed on his loan applications. He did, however, use the PPP proceeds for personal expenses.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is a federal law enacted on March 29, 2020. It is designed to provide emergency financial assistance to millions of Americans who are suffering the economic effects resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. One source of relief provided by the CARES Act is the authorization of up to $349 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses for job retention and certain other expenses through the PPP. In April 2020, Congress authorized over $300 billion in additional PPP funding.MORE NEWS: Hillsborough County Schools Approves Emergency Financial Plan
The PPP allows qualifying small businesses and other organizations to receive loans with a maturity of two years and an interest rate of one percent. Businesses must use PPP loan proceeds for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent and utilities. The PPP allows the interest and principal to be forgiven if businesses spend the proceeds on these expenses within a set time and use at least a certain percentage of the loan towards payroll expenses.