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Coronavirus

California Man Charged with Using COVID Loans to Buy Ferrari

IRVINE, Calif. — Prosecutors say a Southern California man has pleaded not guilty to charges he obtained $5 million in federal coronavirus-relief loans for phony businesses and then used the money for lavish vacations and to buy a Ferrari, a Bentley and a Lamborghini.

Mustafa Qadiri was arrested last week on suspicion of scheming to defraud the Paycheck Protection Program.

The 38-year-old will stand trial in June on multiple charges including bank fraud, wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and money laundering.

Prosecutors say his loan applications included altered bank records, fake tax returns and false information about employees.

He was released on $100,000 bond.

Qadiri’s attorney, Bilal A. Essayli, declined further comment Monday.

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