SALT LAKE CITY – The owner of a Utah trucking company has been charged in federal court with submitting a fraudulent loan application to get a Paycheck Protection Program loan through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Hubert Ivan Ugarte, 52, of Draper, and Lisa Bradshaw Rowberry, 49, of Provo, submitted a loan application to the Small Business Administration (SBA) to obtain the $210,000 PPP loan, according to the complaint.

The PPP loan allows qualifying small businesses to receive loans to which must be used by businesses on payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities.

According to the complaint, Ugarte and Rowberry answered “no” to questions on the application asking if he was under criminal charges in any jurisdiction but in 2019 Ugarte has pending charges of wire fraud and money laundering on a multi-year wire fraud and bribery scheme involving employees at the Salt Lake City Hub of FedEx ground.

Ugarte also circled “no” when asked if he had ever been placed on pretrial diversion but in 1988 he entered into a two-year pretrial diversion to resolve a felony drug possession charge.

According to the complaint, two banks rejected the original PPP loan application after they discovered the borrower was under federal indictment. Rowberry then said she was going to go with a friend she knew in the banking industry and on May 14, Ugarte received $210,000 from Transportation Alliance Bank.

PPP loans require the owner to use the funds for payroll costs. As part of the loan origination, Ugarte agreed to use 75 percent of the loan for this purpose.

Instead, Ugarte used 60 percent of the loan to pay past-due truck payments and only 40 percent for payroll costs.

Ugarte and Rowberry are both charged with conspiracy, removal of property to prevent seizure, loan application fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering. They each face 5-year sentences for the conspiracy and removal of property charge, 10 years for the money laundering charges, 20 years for wire fraud and 30 years plus a $1 million dollar fine for loan application fraud.

The removal of property to prevent seizure count alleges Ugarte received a payment of $60,957.82 for a wrecked tractor in Nevada after Rowberry submitted an insurance claim. The check should have been turned over to the FBI due to a seizure warrant in his FedEx fraud case but instead, Rowberry deposited it into one of Ugarte’s accounts.

An initial appearance for Ugarte, who is in custody, is set for Tuesday, July 14 at 9 a.m. before Magistrate Judge Daphne A. Oberg.

Rowberry appeared last week in federal court and has been released on conditions of pretrial release. Her next hearing is set for July 28 at 3 p.m.

Individuals charged in complaints are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in court.

Anyone with information about allegations of attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF Web Complaint Form at: https://www.justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.

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