What is the Connecticut COVID-19 Coronavirus Fraud Task Force?
- In March 2020, all Connecticut businesses were put on hold with the goal of flattening the novel COVID-19 curve.
- The Federal Government announced the CARES Act and PPP (Payroll Protection Program).
- The Connecticut Attorney General, state prosecutors and the FBI have launched a joint task to fight coronavirus fraud with the PPP and other CARES act programs.
- If you are being investigated for COVID-19 / Coronavirus fraud, PPP fraud, or Connecticut unemployment fraud, call a top Connecticut criminal fraud lawyer.
What is the Coronavirus Fraud Task Force?
On May 6, 2020, the Connecticut United States Attorney, the Connecticut Attorney General, the Chief State’s Attorney, and an FBI Special Agent announced a joint federal and state task force in Connecticut aimed at combating fraud related to the novel coronavirus.
This task force will be investigating a variety of misconduct related to the pandemic. Investigations can be civil or criminal and can be mounted by state/town government or the federal government.
What is Coronavirus Fraud in Connecticut?
Some of the major areas that will come under investigation are fraudulent PPP applications, stimulus check scams, charities fraud, price gouging, hoarding, cyber fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, healthcare and government program fraud, small business loan fraud schemes, and mortgage/student loan relief scams.
How Will a Coronavirus Fraud Investigation Start?
An investigation will often start after a complaint is made alerting the task force of the suspected illegal or unethical activity. If you fear that you have fallen victim to a COVID-19 scam, an attorney can help you file the proper complaint. As a victim, you have certain rights and routes you can take to assert those rights and protect yourself.
Coronavirus Fraud Search Warrants or Attorney General Subpoenas
Once the task force receives a complaint, there are several ways an investigation can go. The Connecticut Attorney General’s Office might issue a Civil Investigative Subpoena or Complaint, the FBI may seek a federal search or arrest warrant, or the State Prosecutors may seek a search or arrest warrant. They will examine your payroll records for PPP fraud. If you fear that you might come under investigation, any of the best Connecticut criminal fraud defense attorneys can help analyze your situation to see what if any penalties might be down the road.
What Do I Do If I’m Being Investigated for Coronavirus Fraud?
After being notified of a pending investigation against you, it is crucial that you speak to an attorney. The authorities will want to talk to you and anything you say can later be used against you. Therefore, while instinct might say to cooperate, there is a right and a wrong way to do it. If you are asked to speak, politely decline to talk until you can speak to a top defense lawyer and have them by your side.
Will I Definitely Be Arrested if I am Being Investigated for Coronavirus Fraud?
No. While the Attorney General cannot arrest you, they can levy fines, civil penalties, and even injunctions stopping you from doing certain things. However, if your actions constitute criminal behavior, you can be arrested either by the federal authorities or the local police.
Contact a Connecticut COVID-19 / Coronavirus Fraud Defense Lawyer Today
A new normal is starting to form, and it looks like coronavirus fraud investigations will be a priority for law enforcement. If you are being investigated, reaching out to an experienced state and federal fraud litigation firm immediately can be the first step to a positive outcome. Follow this link to read the hundreds of reviews from our past clients on Avvo.com, and then call the attorneys at Mark Sherman Law today to learn more about how we can help you.