A Dallas-area tax advisor pleaded guilty on Tuesday to carrying out monetary transactions using money secured by falsified loan applications from the Paycheck Protection Program.
Steven Jalloul, 43, admitted to submitting around 170 loan applications to lenders seeking more than $ 23 million on behalf of approximately 160 clients of his tax preparation company, Royalty Tax & Financial Services LLC. Acting U.S. Attorney Chad Meacham said in a statement.
Jalloul admitted to increasing the employee rosters and monthly payroll costs of his clients in order to increase the amount of eligible PPP funds for their businesses, then charged them a commission of 2-20% on loans received, said Meacham.
Of the 170 falsified loan applications, 97 were approved and awarded more than $ 12 million to Jalloul’s clients, who then paid him $ 972,114 in fees, Meacham said.
“The Paycheck Protection Program was designed to help hard-working businessmen keep their businesses afloat during the pandemic – not to line the pockets of unscrupulous accountants,” he said. “The Department of Justice will prosecute anyone who attempts to exploit the financial programs of the pandemic era. There are countless businesses ravaged by COVID-19 that deserved this money; [Jalloul] does not have.”
Jalloul faces up to 10 years in federal prison for PPP loan fraud. No sentencing date has been set for him Tuesday night. Meacham said Jalloul had previously been sentenced to six years in federal prison for another tax fraud case to which he pleaded guilty in January 2020.