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April 23, 2021Madison, WI, United StatesFinancial Crimes, COVID-19

HSI investigated Wisconsin man for CARES Act & access device frauds

MADISON — Wisconsin man sentenced in two separate cases for Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act fraud and access device fraud.

Timothy M. O’Shea, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin made the announcement.

Ahmad Kanan, 49, Madison, Wisconsin was sentenced 42 months in federal prison and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $147,060.

Kanan committed the CARES Act Fraud while under indictment and awaiting trial in the access device fraud case. He pleaded guilty in both cases on October 2, 2020.

While acting on behalf of Altin Labs, Inc. as its Chief Executive Officer and majority owner, Kanan applied for two Paycheck Protection Program loans funded by the CARES Act. Specifically, in April 2020, Kanan applied for a $72,500 PPP loan through the Bank of Kaukauna in Kaukauna, Wisconsin.

The Bank of Kaukauna noted a discrepancy in the spelling of Kanan’s name in the application, and Altin Labs did not receive these funds. In May 2020, Kanan again applied for a PPP loan, requesting $47,060 through Cross River Bank located in New Jersey. This time, Altin Labs received the funds. In his PPP applications, Kanan used a false spelling of his name and indicated that he was not under indictment on criminal charges, when in fact he was the subject of an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in the Western District of Wisconsin in October 2019, charging him with access device fraud.

The separate access device charges related to two family-owned gas stations that Kanan operated in Janesville, Wisconsin. Kanan admitted to using the routing and account numbers from the bank account of the Embassy of Libya-Military Attaché to pay to the Wisconsin Department of Revenue sales and use tax, penalties, and interest owed by his gas stations in the amount of $83,783.41 in July 2017, and $108,053.02 in December 2017. The Libyan Embassy did not give Kanan permission to use their bank account to make these payments.

The charges against Kanan are the result of investigations by Homeland Security Investigations and the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation, with the assistance of the Wisconsin Department of Revenue, the U.S. State Department, and the Small Business Administration.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office would like to thank the Libyan Embassy for its cooperation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zachary Corey and Meredith Duchemin handled the prosecution.

HSI is a directorate of ICE, responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 employees consists of more than 7,100 Special Agents assigned to 220 cities throughout the United States, and 80 overseas locations in 53 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.

To report a crime, call 866-347-2423 (TTY for hearing impaired: 802-872-6196) or visit the ICE Tip Line.

Updated: 04/23/2021