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Issaquah man sentenced for $1.1M COVID-19 relief fraud scheme

Associated Press

Associated Press

SEATTLE – A suburban Seattle man who submitted nine fraudulent disaster loan applications in an effort to obtain over $1.1 million in federal COVID-19 relief dollars was sentenced Tuesday to two years in prison.

Austin Hsu, 46, of Issaquah, pleaded guilty in January to a count of wire fraud and admitted to applying for loans under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act.

Federal prosecutors say Hsu, the owner and CEO of a company called Back 2 Health Bellevue, received funds from the Economic Injury Disaster Loan and Paycheck Protection Program. He then used the names of current and former employees to apply for loans under the names of four other companies, and submitted fake federal tax filings, according to prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Six of Hsu’s nine loan applications were approved, and he fraudulently got more than $700,000 in COVID-19 relief funds, prosecutors said Tuesday.Hsu has also been ordered to pay $25,000 in fines and about $709,105 in restitution.