News Department

Bipartisan call to crack down on COVID-19 PPP/EIDL fraud, prosecute fraudsters to the fullest extent of the law

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Congressmen Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) and Van Taylor (TX-3) are urging the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to redouble efforts to identify and investigate cases of EIDL and PPP fraud, and to prosecute violators to the fullest extent of the law.

The Members also asked DOJ and SBA to provide Congress with recommendations for further legislative action to hold these fraudsters accountable.

Congress enacted bipartisan legislation in 2020 to direct SBA to provide Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) and Paycheck Protection Program Loans (PPP) to small businesses struggling with the economic impacts of the pandemic and to help keep Americans employed.

As of April 2022, SBA had approved more than 3.9 million EIDL applications and more than 11.4 million PPP loans — helping hundreds of thousands of small businesses and saving millions of jobs.

Now, DOJ has prosecuted more than 1,000 cases of EIDL and PPP fraud, which resulted in millions of dollars of stolen COVID-19 small business relief. Hundreds more are under investigation.

“Hundreds of honest small business owners in our districts were denied loans through PPP and EIDL while criminals forged applications to steal taxpayer dollars. Your departments must continue working aggressively to identify and prosecute cases of EIDL and PPP fraud,” the Members wrote in a letter this week to Attorney General Merrick B. Garland and SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman. “Applicants from businesses in our districts may have been denied critical financial resources due to fraud, and we owe it to our constituents to hold bad actors accountable.”

“It is unthinkable that individuals knowingly stole resources from these programs that should have gone to support businesses in their community. These fraudsters need to be held accountable. As the Department of Justice continues to investigate cases of EIDL/PPP fraud, we request that you prosecute these violators to the fullest extent of the law,” the members said.

Congress passed bipartisan legislation to extend the statute of limitations for EIDL and PPP fraud cases from five years to ten years, to provide the federal government with additional time to investigate and prosecute cases of EIDL and PPP fraud and to ensure we bring fraudsters to justice.

In March, a Michigan man was convicted of stealing more than $4.1 million in EIDL and PPP loans after submitting twenty-nine different fraudulent applications on behalf of sixteen businesses.  Another man was convicted in August of stealing $6 million in PPP loans.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button