Aug 02, 2020
Many Bay Area banks temporarily closed, impacting customers
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HAYWARD, Calif. (KGO) -- If you do business with two of America's biggest banks, you may find the closest branch is temporarily closed due to the novel coronavirus pandemic with no clue as to when it will reopen.
Business is booming at the ATM. But at the Bank of America branch on A Street in Hayward, it is closed.
"Yeah, the one on Hesperian is open, but the line is so long or sometimes I go to Oakland because it's not that busy," said Caroline, Bank of America customer, who said the next closest branch is two-and-a-half miles away.
We took a look at the Bank of America website and found at least 79 branches closed throughout the Bay Area. The company warned back in March it may change or reduce hours and temporarily close banking centers to keep customers and employees safe from COVID-19.
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And it's not just Bank of America.
"I'm angry because I work between Oakland and San Francisco, and there's a Wells Fargo over by my job and it's closed," said Chet Hayes, who banks with Wells Fargo.
The Wells Fargo branch on MacArthur Boulevard in Oakland was closed as well.
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Wells Fargo's website finds at least 62 locations - scattered throughout the region - are temporarily shutdown.
We reached out to both North Carolina-based Bank of America and San Francisco-based Wells Fargo for comment. We have yet to hear back from them.
But, we found this statement on Bank of America's website. It says quote: "We are doing everything we can to reopen as soon as possible, though some locations may remain closed for an extended period of time."
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News Source: abc7news.com
Panorama City Man Charged With Taking $860K In PPP Loans For Sham Sewing Business
LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A Panorama City man faces federal charges of taking more than $860,000 in coronavirus relief loans for a sham sewing business.
Arman Manukyan, 49, who is believed to have fled the United States for Belarus, has been charged with one count each of bank fraud and aggravated identity theft in a criminal complaint filed this week in U.S. District Court. He faces a statutory maximum sentence of 32 years in federal prison if convicted.
Federal prosecutors say Manukyan submitted two applications for Paycheck Protection Program loans to Bank of America for $1.7 million on behalf of two shell companies registered in his name – Argo Global Inc., which he claimed was a sewing business in Beverly Hills with 73 employees, and Express Wiring, a shell company in Glendale.
The Paycheck Protection Program was approved by Congress to distribute billions in forgivable loans to small businesses for job retention and other expenses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
An $867,187 loan was approved for Argo Global, Inc., and prosecutors say Manukyan shortly transferred most of that balance to two of his personal bank accounts. When a bank investigator contacted him after one of his accounts had been frozen because of suspicious activity, Manukyan allegedly said he would use the loan to start a limousine business, contradicting what he wrote on his loan application.
The loan for Express Wiring was rejected by the Small Business Administration.
A seizure warrant was executed in July on Manukyan’s bank accounts, recovering $866,019. Investigators who searched Manukyan’s home on July 22 found multiple debit cards used for California EDD benefits in the names of different people, according to the Department of Justice. Manukyan claimed he found two of the cards on the street and kept them, but never used them. Another $118,474 was recovered from debit cards linked to Manukyan, prosecutors said.
On Aug. 9, investigators were notified that Mankuyan had boarded a flight from Mexico City inbound to Paris, with a final destination of Minsk, Belarus, according to federal officials.