Miami man, 29, employed PPP loans to acquire 2020 Lamborghini Huracan: DOJ

Anderson Animal Shelter in South Elgin was among the organizations awarded a PPP loan data made public this month showed

Federal prosecutors in Florida on Monday accused a man of defrauding almost $4 million from a coronavirus aid program and buying himself a Lamborghini sports vehicle with some of his ill-gotten gains.

Miami law enforcement impounded the vehicle, which federal prosecutors now strategy to seize. He received about $3.9 million in loans, and blew about $500,000 of that before the government began investigating and his bank froze his accounts.

Hines' lawyer, Chad Piotrowski, said his client was "a legitimate business owner who, like millions of Americans, suffered financially during the pandemic" and "is anxious to tell his side of the story when the time comes", according to The New York Times.

He was arrested on July 27 and appeared in Miami federal court charged with fraud and other offenses.

Hines was granted a $100,000 bond to stay at his mother's home with a Global Positioning System monitor.

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And in case you aren't familiar, PPP loans are meant to be used by small business owners to keep their companies afloat, primarily through covering expenses like employee payroll.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Berger said certain SBA loan scammers have been able to exploit the Payroll Protection Program because while the federal agency is guaranteeing the COVID-19 relief loans issued by banks for eligible small businesses, it is not bothering to check any of the claims in their applications. Fraudulent loan applications were submitted about the companies' respective payroll expenses, investigators said. Hines claimed as many as 70 of his employees would be recipients of these newfound funds, however, records from the state show that his various companies (yes, there are multiple) had reported "no record of wage information paid to employees" from early-2015 up to the first quarter of 2020. Hines' arraignment is scheduled for October 14.

He claimed that he had hundreds of employees across four moving companies and that he needed $13million to keep paying them.

Hines allegedly used the PPP loans to purchase a 2020 Lamborghini Huracan for $318,497, according to the criminal complaint. But Hines became uncooperative, and both he and the girlfriend fled before eventually being found and arrested.

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