Fraud Friday – 100 PPP Applications and $13 Million Lead to Criminal Charges for a Tax Preparer

May 26, 2023

Delaney Sexton
Contributing Editor

Fraud Friday – 100 PPP Applications and $13 Million Lead to Criminal Charges for a Tax Preparer

“Fraudulent schemes like these defraud not only a program intended to help small businesses weather a global pandemic but also the United States’ taxpayers. The FBI will continue to ensure that anyone taking advantage of government backed programs are held responsible in the criminal justice system,” says FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Michael Driscoll.

Sandeep Grover was recently charged for allegedly submitting more than 100 PPP applications for dozens of his companies and client companies after creating false IRS filings. The complaint alleges that he submitted more than 100 PPP applications containing false information which caused the disbursement of over $13 million.

In the applications, he made claims that all the companies had employees and tens of thousands of dollars in monthly payroll. Allegedly, there were no wages reported to the Social Security Administration. Also, he recruited other individuals to create fake invoices, create fake documentation, and submit PPP loan applications. U.S. Attorney Damian Williams says “To pull off his scheme, Grover allegedly recruited co-conspirators like Shikha Sehgal, who opened bank accounts for shell companies and lied to banks about those companies’ loan eligibility.”

Grover was also charged with identity theft after taking advantage of an employee’s personal information. Before the pandemic, Grover opened a company under the driver’s name though the driver did not take part in any of the company’s activities. In 2020, Sandeep asked if the driver wanted a government loan that he would not have to pay back, but the driver declined. Despite this, Grover got a PPP loan under his name and forged his signatures on loan documents.

Instead of using proceeds for their intended purpose, Grover allegedly withdrew thousands of dollars at a time to transfer to different bank accounts. The funds were then used to purchase property and pay off personal loans and expenses for his companies.

Grover and one of his clients, Shikha Sehgal, were charged with one count of major fraud against the U.S. and one count of conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud. Additionally, Grover is charged with one count of aggravated identity theft.

Attorney’s Office Press Release
Criminal Complaint