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Coppell man charged with scamming $17 million in PPP money to buy luxury cars and homes

Federal investigators say a Coppell man fraudulently applied for dozens of federal stimulus PPP grants and received more than $17 million that he spent buying real estate and luxury cars such as a Bentley and a Corvette.



Government prosecutors have now charged dozens of people with fraudulently receiving grants from the Payroll Protection Program.


© Brian Elledge/Staff Photographer/The Dallas Morning News/TNS
Government prosecutors have now charged dozens of people with fraudulently receiving grants from the Payroll Protection Program.

A coalition of federal agencies charged Dinesh Sah, 55, of Coppell, with applying for $24.8 million in PPP loans for 15 businesses that claimed to have more than 500 employees, but in fact, many of the businesses were registered after the CARES Act was passed and did not have any employees, according to court documents detailing the indictment.

“Mr. Sah exploited this terrible pandemic for personal gain – and he should be held accountable to the American people for that behavior,” said U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox in a statement. “COVID-19 has devastated the finances of hardworking business owners across the nation. PPP funds should be reserved for those who really need them to keep their companies afloat.”

Sah was arrested Sept. 16 and remains in custody, said a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office for the Northern District of Texas.

Sah is one of dozens indicted by government prosecutors for fraudulently applying for forgivable loans through the Payroll Protection Program, the $650 billion slice of the CARES Act designed to help small businesses cover costs for wages, rent and utilities. Among those charged with fraud were a former NFL football player and a former reality television star.

More than 5.2 million loans were approved nationwide. According to the U.S. Treasury Department, Texas businesses were approved for more than $41 billion in grants that were intended to go to businesses with 500 employees or fewer.

The indictment said

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‘How many Nigerians have cars, run generators in their homes that they need this fuel?’ Presidency defends fuel price hike

Garba Shehu, EFCC, NDDC, NSITF
Garba Shehu

The Presidency has continued to defend the recent hike in petrol prices, as spokesman Garba Shehu on Friday questioned how many Nigerians benefit from low fuel charges.

The Buhari administration earlier this year put in motion plans to cut out fuel subsidy and deregulate the petroleum downstream sector.

Since then, prices of petrol have fallen, in line with a dip in international demand attributed to the coronavirus pandemic.

However, in September, the price of petrol went up, sparking outrage among many Nigerians.

According to Channels Tv, Some have blamed the government for allowing the prices to rise even as many Nigerians are still dealing with the effects of the pandemic.

On Friday, during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Mr Shehu argued that it is unfair for poor Nigerians to continue to subsidise the lifestyle of urban dwellers.

“We belong to a global market system,” Mr Shehu said. “We are buying, mostly, refined products from the international markets.

“Is it fair that the taxpayer’s money . . . how many Nigerians have cars anyway? How many of them run generators in their homes that they need this fuel for? Is it fair that the farmer and the herder and all of these low-level people in our society, that the taxpayer money is taken from them and is subsidising the lifestyle of our city, urban dwellers?

“So the President is just trying to be as practical as possible on this matter.”

Deregulation is the answer
Mr Shehu also defended President Muhammadu Buhari’s comments on Independence day, where he compared the price of fuel in Nigeria with that obtained in Saudi Arabia.

He said: “So Saudi Arabia is important in this discussion because what is the technical cost of producing a barrel of oil in Saudi Arabia? It’s not

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Fire claims collector cars and couple’s recently remodeled home

ST. HELENA — Madeline Buty and Jason Curliano had just put the final touches on their retirement home on a hill overlooking the vineyards of Napa Valley. They hung the last picture on the wall Saturday.

The couple, from Piedmont, had spent three years remodeling the home, a striking modern build with large windows and a wrap-around deck, along Silverado Trail, a few miles from downtown St. Helena.

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Less than 48 hours later, it was a smoldering pile of ashes after the Glass Fire tore through the area.

“We just put so much love and energy into that place,” Buty said Monday, as she sobbed after seeing a video of the ruins. “We spent a lot of years looking for a place. It was the perfect house for us.”

Their home was one of dozens destroyed as the fire scorched Deer Creek, Angwin and parts of St. Helena. The Glass Fire has burned more than 42,000 acres, destroying at least 80 structures including several wineries.

Buty and Curliano, both in their 50s, bought the home

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