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Father, son sentenced to prison for $1.7M COVID PPP fraud

The Justice Department said Wednesday that two men were sentenced to prison for $1.7 million COVID fraud scheme. File photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI
The Justice Department said Wednesday that two men were sentenced to prison for $1.7 million COVID fraud scheme. File photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 7 (UPI) -- Two men, a father and son, were sentenced to prison for their role in a $1.7 million COVID-19 Paycheck Protection Program fraud scheme.

Izzat Freitekh, 57, of Waxhaw, N.C. was sentenced four years in prison, while his son, Tarik Freitekh, 35, whose last known residence was Glendale, Calif., was sentenced to 87 months in prison.

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According to court documents, Izzat and Tarik obtained $1.7 million by submitting fraudulent PPP loans for several companies that they owned. The documents fraudulently misrepresented the number of employees and their payroll expenses.

"After obtaining the fraudulent loan proceeds, the Freitekhs engaged in unlawful monetary transactions with the proceeds of the scheme, including making $30,000 in payments to family members," the Justice Department said.

The Freitekh's were convicted in March 2022.

The government has secured approximately $1.3 million and returned it to the lender.

Since the inception of the CARES Act, the Justice Department has prosecuted over 192 defendants in more than 121 criminal cases and has seized over $78 million in cash proceeds.

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