By Joshua Rhett Miller
A Miami man who admitted scamming the government out of nearly $4 million in COVID-19 relief funds — and using it to buy a $318,000 Lamborghini and other luxury splurges — has been sentenced to more than six years in prison.
David Tyler Hines, 29, was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty to wire fraud in February, the Department of Justice announced.
Court documents show Hines sought $13.5 million from the Payment Protection Program to purportedly pay employees of his four moving businesses. A bank later approved three of Hines’ applications, resulting in $3.9 million in loans.
But he instead splashed the cash on a 2020 Lamborghini Huracan Evo, as well as on dating sites, Miami resorts and luxury retailers.
Hines also made two $15,000 payments to his mom, and dropped more than $11,000 at upscale hotels like the Fontainebleau and the Setai Hotel in Miami Beach, court records show.
Hines, who was charged in July, was ordered Wednesday to forfeit $3.4 million in fraudulent loan proceeds as well as the Lamborghini, which he bought in North Miami Beach last May, according to court documents.
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Months later, Hines was involved in a hit-and-run accident that led investigators to link him to the V-10 sports car that reach speeds of up to 210 mph, the Miami Herald reported.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act led to the authorization of $933 billion in PPP funding by December, according to the Department of Justice. Qualifying small businesses could receive loans at an interest rate of just 1 percent, but must use the money for payroll costs, mortgage interest, rent or utilities.
More than 100 defendants have been prosecuted in more than 70 criminal cases connected to the loans, resulting in the seizure of some $60 million in fraudulently obtained funds, as well as real estate and luxury purchases.