Philadelphia Lawyer Sentenced to Prison For Fraud, Tax Evasion
A Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based lawyer has been sentenced to federal prison for fraud and tax evasion.
Jonathan Olivetti will serve 27 months in prison, per a sentence handed down by United States District Court Judge Jennifer P. Wilson. Olivetti was found guilty of wire fraud related to a scheme he orchestrated to fraudulently collect COVID-19 pandemic relief money he was not entitled to, mail fraud, and tax evasion.
According to an official release from the IRS, Olivetti engaged in his scam between June 2020 and February 2021. The attorney applied for two Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and two Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) for his law firm, Olivetti Law, LLC. These two loan programs were expanded and enhanced by President Joe Biden's Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security ("CARES") Act, which was signed into law in March 2020.
The legislation was designed to assist Americans -- specifically small business owners -- who were struggling financially as a direct result of the pandemic.
While applying for his PPP loans, the court asserted that Olivetti made "materially false representations" by reporting that the payroll of Olivetti Law, LLC was higher than it actually was. The defendant received $41,600 from the federal government based upon these false numbers.
Furthermore, Olivetti applied for two EIDL loans. Designed to provide low-interest financing to small businesses that were facing "substantial financial disruption," these loans offered tax-forgivable $10,000 advances. Olivetti Law attempted to obtain $62,500 in EIDL funding, but was ultimately not approved by the Small Business Administration (SBA).
In addition to his COVID-19 relief scam, Olivetti also embezzled the sum of $91,991.28 from an estate that his law firm was representing. He also evaded taxes between November 9, 2015, and July 15, 2020, by illegally hiding money and lying to an IRS Officer.
It has not been confirmed where Olivetti, who previously practiced law in Scranton, will serve his prison term.
What do you think about Olivetti's case?
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