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MA Pizza Shop Owner Faces 40 Yrs Prison – Lied for PPP Loan, Bought Alpaca Farm

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Alpacas

Oh, the elusive Paycheck Protection Program, aka the PPP loan; some people got it, some didn’t. Some people have to pay it back, some don’t. As with all government-run programs, it’s doubtful that only the deserved and qualified received the loans. One such man lucky enough to beat the system at the time has now been caught.

Dana McIntyre, 57, lied about the number of employees he had in order to get a nice chunk of change, over $660,000 in federal COVID-19 relief funds. McIntyre is the owner of a Massachusetts pizza parlor but used some of the money to buy, and then stock, an alpaca farm in Vermont.

According to a released statement from the U.S. attorney’s office in Boston, McIntyre was arrested Tuesday and charged with wire fraud and money laundering.  In an email, McIntyre’s attorney wrote “my client denies the allegation and will have further comment at a later date.”

ABC News reports “in his application, he falsified an official tax form and claimed the pizza shop had almost 50 employees when records indicate it had fewer than 10, in an effort to inflate the size of the loan he was entitled to, authorities said.”

Once he obtained the money, “he sold the pizza shop and used the money to purchase and upgrade a farm in Vermont and buy several alpacas.” McIntyre “also bought two vehicles – including a 1950 Hudson – and weekly airtime for a cryptocurrency-themed radio show that he hosted, prosecutors said.” If convicted on the two charges, he faces up to forty years in prison and $750,000 in fines.

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Politics

Reporters Want Answers on Biden’s Persistent Cough Which Consistently Interrupts Briefings

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Joe Biden

On Thursday, President Joe Biden’s persistent cough, which forced him to pause and clear his throat several times, has the public concerned. The noticeable coughing fit occurred during a speech about tax hikes. Soon after, reporters questioned White House press secretary Jen Psaki about Biden’s health.

NBC News reporter Kelly O’Donnell addressed the matter head-on. “Many of us were in the East Room watching the president, we’ve seen him on many occasions where he had a repeated cough. What is the situation with that cough and is it a concern?”

Psaki snapped back, “It’s not a concern.” She added, “We have a doctor who travels with him, obviously who checks in if it is ever warranted, and certainly that continues to be the case, as it has been since the beginning of his presidency.”

O’Donnell followed up, “Is there an explanation for why he coughs so frequently in situations like that?” Psaki again downplayed the concern, responding, “I don’t think it’s an issue of concern. I think there is a range of reasons why we may need to clear our throat or we may have a little light cold, and that’s certainly something that presidents, elected officials, reporters, spokespeople can confront.”

There is only so much longer the White House can ignore the pressing concern. Even #Bidencough became a popular social media hashtag. In Thursday’s same briefing, Psaki was asked about when Biden would receive a full physical examination, as his mental acuity has been called into question for years.

“I know this is an understandable question. I don’t have an update. He will get one soon. And when he does, we will make sure you all are aware of it and get the information,” Psaki condescendingly responded.

The New York Post reports the recent times Biden’s cough has been problematic:

After he coughed and was hoarse while speaking in December after the Electoral College confirmed his victory in the 2020 election, aides said he was suffering from a slight cold.

More recently, the president hacked at several points during a speech Monday in California in support of Gov. Gavin Newsom in the recall election, causing him to apologize and even pause to take a sip of water.

During the presidential campaign, his doctor, Kevin O’Connor, told the Wall Street Journal that Biden is fit to serve as president, but also noted that he is being treated for high cholesterol, acid reflux disease and seasonal allergies.

Acid reflux often forces him to clear his throat, O’Connor said.

“This may also contribute to occasional cough and sinus congestion,” O’Connor wrote in a medical statement. “He has received an endoscopy to rule out any more significant disease.”

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Legal

Clinton Campaign Attorney Indicted For Lying To FBI In Trump-Russia Investigation

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Hillary Clinton

An attorney who represented Hillary Clinton’s most recent failed presidential campaign in 2016 was indicted on Thursday for allegedly lying to FBI officials, as part of U.S. Special Counsel John Durham’s probe into the origins of the FBI’s investigation of supposed ties between Russia and former President Donald Trump’s campaign.

“Michael Sussmann, a partner with Perkins Coie who also represented the Democratic National Committee in connection with Russia’s hack of the organization, is accused of making false statements during a Sept. 19, 2016 meeting with former FBI General Counsel James Baker,” Reuters reported. “This marks the second criminal case Durham has filed so far since former Attorney General William Barr tapped him in 2019 to investigate U.S. officials who probed the Trump-Russia contacts.”

According to the New York Times, Biden administration Attorney General Merrick B. Garland has the authority to overrule Durham but declined to.
“Donald J. Trump and his supporters have long accused Democrats and Perkins Coie — whose political law group, a division separate from Mr. Sussmann’s, represented the party and the Hillary Clinton campaign — of seeking to stoke unfair suspicions about Mr. Trump’s purported ties to Russia,” the New York Times
reported. “The case against Mr. Sussmann centers on the question of who his client was when he conveyed certain suspicions about Mr. Trump and Russia to the F.B.I. in September 2016. Among other things, investigators have examined whether Mr. Sussmann was secretly working for the Clinton campaign — which he denies.”

“According to the indictment, Sussmann ‘lied about the capacity in which he was providing the allegations to the FBI’ when he met one-on-one with FBI General Counsel James Baker,” the Daily Mail explained. “That prompted to Baker to assume he was acting merely as a ‘good citizen’ rather than as a ‘paid advocate or political operative.’ He stated falsely that he was not doing the work ‘for my client,’ according to the indictment. Sussmann had handed over three ‘white papers’ as well as computer files containing evidence of the reported secret channel.”

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