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ALBANY, GA (CBS46)—The U.S. Attorney’s office announced a Georgia man is facing several federal charges related to the Paycheck Protection Program.

According to a spokesperson, a grand jury indicted Anthony C. Boncimino, 46, of Sycamore, Ga., with four counts of bank fraud, four counts of money laundering, and four counts of making false statements.

According to the federal indictment, Boncimino allegedly submitted at least four fraudulent loan applications to the Small Business Administration and third-party banks for the Paycheck Protection Program. In the application process, Boncimino reportedly used shell companies that did not suffer any losses. The government reported that these businesses either did not exist, did not conduct business, or only existed on paper.

Boncimino reportedly received around $2.6 million in PPP loans as a result of his allegedly fraudulent applications.

“Fraudsters who attempt to capitalize during a global pandemic will face the possibility of federal prosecution for their crimes,” said Peter D. Leary, the Acting U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia. “Federal investigators will persist in unraveling the often-complex CARES Act fraud schemes and bring criminals to justice.”

“Lying to gain access to economic stimulus funds for personal gain will be met with justice,” SBA OIG’s Eastern Region Special Agent in Charge Amaleka McCall-Brathwaite.

“SBA OIG, in coordination with its law enforcement partners, will relentlessly pursue evidence of fraud against SBA’s programs aimed at assisting the nation’s small businesses struggling with the pandemic challenges...”

"The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration aggressively pursues those who endeavor to defraud programs afforded to the American people under the CARES Act," said J. Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. "We appreciate the efforts of the Department of Justice and our law enforcement partners in this effort."

If convicted, Boncimino faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a $1,000,000 fine for bank fraud.

He was released on bond.

To help combat PPP fraud, the Attorney General established a COVID-19 task force.

Anyone with information about COVID-19 fraud should call the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline at 866-720-5721 .

Copyright 2021 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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