LA Man Accused of Stealing $8M from PPP and Losing Large Chunk on Gambling Arrested

  • Andrew Marnell accused of swindling the PPP and blowing the money on gambling and stock purchases
  • Andrew charged in a criminal complaint with bank fraud
  • Andrew accused of submitting fraudulent loan applications to different lenders
  • Andrew lost over $150,000 in two days while gambling at Bellagio and lost over $2M in futures trading
  • Andrew held without bond

40-year-old Andrew Marnell, a Los Angeles resident, is accused of swindling the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and walking away with millions. Andrew would later go-ahead to lose a sizeable chunk of money in Las Vegas while gambling and in risky stock purchases.

$8 million plus

According to the US Attorney’s Office in LA, Andrew is charged in a criminal complaint with bank fraud. In the complaint, he is alleged to have ‘obtained more than $8 million in PPP loans through applications to insured financial institutions, and others, on behalf of different companies.’

A copy of the complaint accessed by the Las Vegas Review-Journal accuses Andrew of submitting fraudulent loan applications to over four lenders through the program, Small Business Administration. The program helps businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic to see that the workforce remains employed.

It is alleged that Andrew made several false and misleading statements about the companies’ payroll expenses and business operations and went ahead to use ‘aliases, submitted fake and altered documents, including bogus federal tax filings and employee payroll records.’

The complaint in question was filed by a senior special agent working with the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Office of Inspector General. Among the company names alleged to have been used by Andrew while submitting the applications included; Slatestone LLC, Creek LLC, Quicksilver LLC, among others.

One of the applications belonging to ‘Slatestone LLC’ claimed that they were a firm headquartered in Wyoming, working with 75 employees, and that ‘Andrew Merrill’ owned and controlled the firm. Andrew’s success in swindling the PPP loans, according to authorities, was down to using different names and falsifying loan application documents.

Fraud investigators would later flag some of those loans.

Huge losses incurred

Andrew is said to have transferred millions of dollars obtained fraudulently to his brokerage accounts for futures trading. Authorities claim that the endeavor resulted in huge losses. One brokerage account, for example, used by Andrew in June for futures trading resulted in losses of $2,773,455.40.

Andrew did not stop at that. He also gambled at various casinos in Las Vegas. The complaint claims that he was gambling in Bellagio for two days (July 9 to July 11). Information from Bellagio indicates that he lost over $150,000 in those days.

An IP address was traced to an account in the name of Andrew’s husband by the authorities. Investigations also show that a brokerage firm where Andrew attempted to open other accounts using aliases had banned him from trading due to ‘fraudulent activities’

Andrew is currently being held without bond according to the press release from the US Attorney’s Office in the Central District of California.

I'm Adam Shaw, Senior Editor and one of the first members at VegasSlots. I'm a massive football sports fan but also love casinos and occasional trips to Las Vegas. Gaming runs in the family

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