Feds accuse Georgia couple of setting up shell trucking companies to raise PPP funds

Two Georgia residents face serious charges of fraud and theft related to a scheme to use shell truck companies to raise coronavirus relief funds from the US government.

On June 14, Curtis Porch, 48, and Dereen Porch, 43, were arrested and charged with wire fraud and theft of government property related to the CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act.

The indictment accuses Curtis Porch and Dereen Porch of “quoting[ing] a scheme and artifice to defraud the United States Small Business Administration (“SBA”) and obtain[ing] money from the SBA, through false and fraudulent claims and statements related to loan and/or grant applications made to the SBA, under the auspices of the CARES Act, which resulted in the wrongful issuance sums of money to the defendants by the SBA. ”

Authorities accuse the couple of forging documents and submitting fraudulent PPP loan applications for three trucking companies – FNP Trucking, LLC, Porch to Porch Transportation, LLC and Buckner Transportation, LLC.

“The government alleges that the companies did not exist, do no business, or existed only on paper,” authorities said in a news release.

Prosecutors say none of the three trucking companies had any assets, generated revenue, or had employees engaged in trucking business at the time the loan applications were submitted.

The couple are accused of fraudulently obtaining $364,200.

If the couple are convicted, they face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for wire theft and a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for theft of government property .

The case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the Criminal Investigations Unit of the Internal Revenue Service.

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