coronavirus

Philly Man Charged in $700K PPE Scheme

“Instead of purchasing and delivering medical gowns, Singh used the funds for personal expenses,” a FBI special agent wrote in an affidavit

Registered Nurse Joan Pung, right, dawns her isolation gowns in the hallway inside the ICU at Providence St. Jude Medical Center Christmas Day on Friday, Dec. 25, 2020 in Fullerton, CA.
Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A Philadelphia man is accused of scamming $700,000 from two New York-based companies by falsely promising to sell personal protective equipment.

New Jersey Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced Wednesday that Gauravjit Singh is charged with wire fraud.

Singh allegedly entered agreements with unnamed companies through his business, Mask Medical LLC, and would have been paid about $7.125 million for 1.5 million medical gowns, according to a criminal complaint.

Singh said he had connections to a Chinese factory that manufactured medical gowns, according to court documents. As part of the scam, Singh sent photos and video meant to show factory workers preparing the gowns for shipment and offered excuses about the shipment.

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Singh was wired approximately $712,500 from the victims of the scheme, but he did not deliver the personal protective equipment, according to the complaint.

“Instead of purchasing and delivering medical gowns, Singh used the funds for personal expenses,” a FBI special agent wrote in an affidavit.

Singh spent the funds on personal expenses, including about $5,100 on a vehicle, $1,700 for a Thai restaurant in Florida and approximately $1,300 for travel, according to a criminal complaint.

A defense attorney could not be immediately reached Thursday night.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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