Beverly Grove man accused of lying to get $ 9 million in COVID-19 relief loans, exploding money in Vegas


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A Beverly Grove man was arrested Thursday morning to face federal charges alleging he used fraud to secure some $ 9 million in loans to help small businesses survive during the pandemic, then squandered part money in Las Vegas, officials said.

The amount of relief money Andrew Marnell, 40, is accused of fraudulently obtaining may increase as the investigation continues, as authorities have already discovered the scheme was deeper than they didn’t initially think so, the US attorney’s office in Los Angeles said in a press release. .

Marnell faces one count of bank fraud, prosecutors said.

Officials say he applied for loans from various banks on behalf of several companies after the $ 659 billion paycheck protection program launched in April. The taxpayer-supported initiative is part of the CARES law relief program and aims to fund job retention in small businesses.

The applications Marnell submitted reportedly included numerous false and misleading statements about the operations and expenses of the companies he applied for. The defendant also used false names and documents to substantiate his claims, authorities said.

When he got the funding, Marnell reportedly transferred millions to his stock trading accounts and made risky bets in the market. He also blew hundreds of thousands of dollars in Las Vegas, including the Bellagio, as late as last week, prosecutors said.

Marnell could face up to 30 years in prison if found guilty of the charges against him.

The accused first appeared in a downtown Los Angeles federal courtroom Thursday afternoon and was held without bail pending a hearing on Tuesday, officials said.

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