U.S. Attorney Richard G. Frohling of the Eastern District of Wisconsin announced that on February 1, 2022, a federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Chad M. Schampers (age: 38) of De Pere, Wisconsin, with one count of wire fraud. , in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343, and one count of money laundering, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1957. The count of wire fraud carries a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment, and the money laundering charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment.
The indictment alleges that Schampers filed a fraudulent loan application requesting approximately $300,000 in forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) under the CARES Act. (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security). The CARES Act is a federal law enacted on March 29, 2020, which aims to provide emergency financial assistance to millions of Americans who are suffering the economic effects resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
One of the sources of relief provided by the CARES Act is the authorization of up to $349 billion in small business forgivable loans for job retention and certain other expenses through the PPP. In April 2020, Congress authorized over $300 billion in additional PPP funding.
Businesses must use PPP loan proceeds for payroll costs, mortgage interest, rent, and utilities. The PPP allows interest and principal to be waived if businesses spend the proceeds of these expenses within a specified time frame and use at least a certain percentage of the loan for payroll expenses.
The indictment alleges that Schampers illegally used approximately $300,000 in PPP loan funds for personal expenses, including the purchase of a private residence and the diversion of funds to his personal account.
“Individuals who engage in PPP fraud not only cause losses to every taxpayer, but also prevent funds from helping small businesses and employees in need,” U.S. Attorney Frohling said. “Together with our law enforcement partners, the United States Attorney’s Office remains focused on holding anyone who has engaged in this type of fraud accountable for their actions.”
Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Milwaukee Division, Michael E. Hensle, said, “Today’s announcement demonstrates the FBI’s continued commitment and dedication to working with our partners to hold accountable individuals who commit fraud against the American people and assist victims of fraud. . This large-scale home improvement fraud scheme has taken advantage of and broken the trust of several homeowners and financial institutions. The FBI will continue to pursue and bring to justice individuals who take advantage of others for profit and believe they are above the law.
This matter was investigated by the Brown County Sheriff’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Julie F. Stewart and Daniel R. Humble.
An indictment is only an accusation and not proof of guilt. Defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial in which the government must prove their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Anyone with information about alleged attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Department of Justice’s National Disaster Fraud Center hotline at 866-720 -5721 or through the NCDF’s online complaint form at: https://www.justice. gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.
# # #
For more information, contact: [email protected]
Follow us on twitter