Two years for builder who lost fraudulent Covid loan in crypto scam

A London builder who fraudulently applied for a £50,000 ($62,000) Covid-19 loan before losing it all in a crypto investment scam has been sentenced to almost two years in prison.

As announced by the UK’s Insolvency Service, 43-year-old Lukasz Nowak successfully applied for a £50,000 ($63,000) Bounce Back loan in October 2020, claiming his business had made £205,000 ($258,000) in the previous tax year. However, Nowak had actually turned over just £20,000 ($25,000).

The Bounce Back scheme allows small and medium-sized businesses to borrow between £2,000 ($2,500) and up to 25% of their turnover.

Rather than spending the loan on financially supporting his business as intended, today’s press release revealed how Nowak chose to invest the funds into crypto via a third-party broker.

However, the broker in question stole his funds, forcing him to declare bankruptcy in July 2021.

Read more: Hackers want $380K in bitcoin for Royal Family’s stolen medical records

Nowak confessed to the scheme following an investigation from the Insolvency Service and later pleaded guilty on October 9 to fraud by false representation. 

On November 27, Nowak was handed a 20-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, ordered to pay £12,000 to the bank he defrauded, given 200 hours of unpaid work, and ordered to attend 15 rehabilitation sessions.   

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