SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — A Cottonwood Heights man will spend two years in prison after being convicted in federal court for COVID-19 loan-related fraud and money laundering, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Chris E. McCormick, 64, made false statements to Mountain America Credit Union to get nearly $266,000 in fraudulent Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans for his small business in May 2020. McCormick, who took a plea deal, admitted to making the false statements. The case was investigated jointly by the FBI Salt Lake City Field Office and the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation.

McCormick’s told the credit union that his company, Peak Debt Consumption LLC, had 12 employees with a monthly payroll of $100,000. He admitted to the court that he committed money laundering by sending an online wire transfer of $225,000 in PPP funds to his personal TD Ameritrade account.

McCormick has been ordered to pay $465,995 in restitution and will serve 24 months in prison, along with an additional 36 months of supervised release after his release.

“Mr. McCormick’s actions were illegal and unfair to other honest and hard-working small businesses trying to make ends meet during a challenging time,” said District of Utah U.S. Attorney Trina A. Higgins. “PPP fraud imposes serious penalties, and we hope cases like these serve as a deterrent to other potential scammers seeking to defraud the U.S. Government.”