Bakersfield Man Pleads Guilty to Stealing over $160,000 in COVID-19 Relief Money

FRESNO, Calif. — Jaswinder Bhangoo, 50, of Bakersfield, pleaded guilty today to stealing $163,750 in COVID-19 relief money, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced. 

According to court documents, between May 2020 and November 2021, Bhangoo applied for over $250,000 in COVID-19 relief loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration. In the applications, Bhangoo falsely represented that he owned multiple businesses with several employees and substantial revenues. He also represented that he had not been convicted of a felony in the previous five years when, in fact, he had been convicted of insurance fraud. Based on Bhangoo’s false representations, some of his loan applications were approved, and he received approximately $163,750 in federal funds to which he was not entitled. 

Read the full press release.  U.S. Attorney’s Office, Easter District of California, October 10, 2023