Former North Shore pizzeria proprietor ordered to pay again PPP mortgage used to begin Vermont Alpaca farm


Dana McIntyre, 59, pled responsible to costs associated to utilizing a pandemic enterprise aid mortgage to purchase an Alpaca farm and airtime for his cryptocurrency radio present.

The previous proprietor of a North Shore pizzeria used a pandemic enterprise aid mortgage to purchase an Alpaca farm in Vermont. LENNART PREISS / AFP through Getty Pictures, File

A federal decide has sentenced the previous proprietor of a North Shore pizzeria to 2 years in jail and to pay again practically $680,000 for fraud involving COVID-19 enterprise loans and advantages.

In April, Dana McIntyre pleaded responsible to 4 counts of wire fraud and three counts of cash laundering. The costs stemmed from claims that he filed fraudulent Paycheck Safety Program (PPP) mortgage functions, used the loans for private bills, and fraudulently filed for and picked up COVID-19 unemployment advantages.

Among the many private bills for which the 59-year-old Grafton, Vermont, resident used the mortgage was the acquisition of a farm in Vermont and eight Alpacas. McIntyre is the previous proprietor of Rasta Pasta Pizzeria in Beverly, Mass.

On Thursday, U.S. District Courtroom Decide Denise Casper sentenced McIntyre to 2 years in jail, three years of supervised launch, and to pay $679,156 in restitution and forfeiture, the U.S. Lawyer for Massachusetts stated in a press launch.

“Dana McIntyre capitalized on a nationwide disaster and stole lots of of hundreds of {dollars} from a restricted pool of cash put aside to assist struggling companies,” FBI Particular Agent Jodi Cohen stated within the launch. “At the moment’s sentence holds him accountable for his egocentric felony conduct.” 

McIntyre’s misuse of public funds

In March 2020 when McIntyre lived in Beverly and Essex, he used the names of his grownup kids to submit two fraudulent COVID-19 enterprise aid mortgage functions for companies that didn’t exist, the discharge stated.

The next month, McIntyre started submitting functions and weekly certifications to obtain pandemic unemployment advantages, officers stated. In these filings, he falsely claimed he was not working or receiving earnings because of the pandemic.

In actuality, McIntyre was nonetheless working Rasta Pasta Pizzeria and earning money from it, in response to officers. By September 2020, when McIntyre bought the restaurant, he had obtained over $17,000 in unemployment advantages.

In April 2020, McIntyre submitted a fraudulent software for a PPP mortgage of over $660,000 with false details about the pizzeria’s staff and payroll bills, officers stated. He additionally falsified an official tax type to make the restaurant qualify for a bigger mortgage.

After receiving the mortgage, McIntyre bought the pizzeria and used practically all the cash to buy a farm in Vermont and eight alpacas, in response to the discharge. He additionally spent it on different private bills, together with two automobiles and airtime for his radio present about cryptocurrency.

“Make no mistake about it, this was no momentary lapse within the fog of the pandemic. Mr. McIntyre submitted a number of bogus functions for pandemic cash that was supposed to offer a lifeline to small companies and their staff throughout a nationwide emergency,” Appearing U.S. Lawyer Joshua Levy stated within the launch. “He stole from the American taxpayers and the various small companies which actually wanted these loans to outlive.”

Cracking down on COVID-19 aid fraud

In Might 2021, Lawyer Common Merrick Garland established the COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Process Power to crack down on individuals who had misused public funds via pandemic aid packages.

Since then, many enterprise homeowners have been prosecuted for such crimes. In June, a Brighton meals truck proprietor was sentenced to 2 years in jail for investing $1.5 million he obtained from pandemic aid loans into the inventory market.

Final month, Levy stated, his workplace allotted extra assets to investigating one of these fraud.

“Whether or not somebody used stolen cash to purchase luxurious items or fancy vehicles or unique livestock, we intend to seek out them and maintain them accountable,” he stated within the launch.

Anybody with details about potential pandemic aid fraud can report it utilizing the Nationwide Middle for Catastrophe Fraud’s (NCDF) Internet Grievance Kind.