CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – A man and his son were found guilty on multiple charges Thursday after authorities accused them of obtaining more than $1.7 million in PPP loans through fraudulent loan applications through a Charlotte restaurant.
The Department of Justice accused Izzat Freitekh his son Tarik Freitekh of obtaining $1.7 million through fraudulent PPP loans by submitting false applications by three companies, including La Shish Kabob restaurant and La Shish Catering.
The men were each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of bank fraud. Izzat Freitekh was also charged with one count of false statements.
There was also an application that included fraudulent IRS tax documents submitted on behalf of Green Apple Catering LLC (Green Apple), stating that the restaurant had paid $4.8 million to employees in 2019, despite evidence that the company did not exist until March 2020, the DOJ said.
An application that included false company payroll information and fraudulent IRS tax documents was also submitted in the name of Aroma Packaging Systems.
According to the evidence presented during the trial, the father and son duo also engaged in unlawful monetary transactions with the money they obtained, including making $30,000 payments to family members.
The DOJ said the elder Freitekh also made false statements to law enforcement agents, saying that a company called “Kyber Capitol” was responsible for submitting the PPP loan applications.
“The wicked borrow and do not repay, but in the Freitekhs’ case they also lie to cover up the fraud,” said U.S. Attorney King. “This father and son duo exploited a national emergency for their own benefit, then tried to obstruct justice to avoid punishment.”
The DOJ said last December that they had recovered about $1.3 million of the disbursed PPP funds in the matter.
Izatt Freitekh was convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, three counts of money laundering and one count of making false statements. Prosecutors said he faces up to 10 years in prison for conspiracy to commit money laundering, 10 years in prison for each of the money laundering counts, and five years in prison for the false statements count.
Tarik Freitekh was convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, one count of bank fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, one count of money laundering, and one count of falsifying and concealing material facts. Prosecutors said he faces up to 30 years in prison for the bank fraud count, 20 years in prison for the wire fraud and money laundering conspiracies, 10 years in prison for the money laundering count, and five years in prison for the falsifying material facts count.