August 31, 2018
By Dominic J Bartolone
Contributing Editor, Fraud Friday
Fraud Friday — Man Who Fled to Iran Sentenced in Bank Fraud Case
A Thousand Oaks man who took out millions in fraudulent loans was sentenced to nearly five years in federal prison on Monday.
Mohsen Hass, 60, borrowed more than $11 million from a Korea Town commercial bank between 2006 and 2007.
Hass, who also goes by the names Mike Hass and Mohsen Hassanshani, plead guilty in March to one count of making false statements to a financial institution. Authorities say that Hass provided fake assets and other fraudulent financial information on loan applications in obtaining commercial financing for his businesses.
Hass used the bank funds to purchase a Santa Paula gas station and two car washes in south Los Angeles. He later defaulted on the loans and was charged with bank fraud in 2014. Hass fled the U.S. for Iran, where he lived for four years before surrendering to authorities in February.
Officials say that Hass had help. According to prosecutors, one bank employee knowingly allowed the loan applications to be processed with false financial information.
Ataollah Aminpour, who pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing, was an executive with Mirae Bank in downtown Los Angeles. The bank went under in 2009, and DOJ officials say that Aminpour’s actions were a “significant factor” in its failure.
U.S. District Court Judge Dale Fischer sentenced Hass to 57 months in federal prison and ordered him to pay restitution of over $5.7 million to financial institutions Mirae Bank and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
The FDIC served as the receiver for the bank after it went into receivership as a result of the fraudulent conduct of Hass and Aminpour.
Hass “obtained multi-million dollar businesses to run without putting his own money at risk and allowing at least one bank insider to profit,” prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memorandum filed with the court.