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National Insurance Crime Bureau

Six area residents charged in COVID relief fraud scheme

U.S. Attorney’s Office – Southern District of Texas, November 17, 2020

HOUSTON – Seven individuals across two states have been charged in a Houston federal indictment unsealed today for their alleged participation in a scheme to obtain approximately $16 million in forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) guarantees PPP loans under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Amir Aqeel, 52, and Pardeep Basra, 51, both of Houston; Rifat Bajwa, 51, Richmond; Mayer Misak, 40, Cypress; Mauricio Navia, 41, Katy; and Richard Reuth, 57, Spring, are expected to make their initial appearances at 2 p.m. today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew M. Edison.

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