Automakers and suppliers have been suffering financially during the pandemic, and the federal government has provided assistance for small businesses with the Small Business Administration’s Payroll Protection Program.
The PPP, as it’s known, allows businesses to get loans to pay employee payroll, building rent or mortgages and other legitimate business expenses — like a Lamborghini Huracan Evo for $318,497.
Well, that’s what David T. Hines thought he could buy with the $4 million he secured from the $650 million loan program that, if used properly, will be forgiven by the federal government. Unsurprisingly, Hines has been arrested.
To be clear, it’s unlikely a nice blue Huracan is unlikely to qualify for loan forgiveness. Hines also spent thousands of dollars on dating websites, jewelry and clothes, along with stays at high-end hotels such as the Fontainebleau and Setai on Miami Beach, according to the Miami Herald.
Hines’ scheme unraveled after he was involved in an accident July 11. Miami police impounded the car and Hines was arrested. He now faces fraud and other charges related to the hit-and-run incident and prosecutors plan to seize the Lambo.
According to a criminal complaint, Hines’ four South Florida moving businesses applied for seven SBA loans totaling $13.5 million through Bank of America. He claimed the funds would be spent on at least 70 employees with a monthly payroll of $4 million. The bank approved three of his applications, totaling $3,984,557, the newspaper reported.
However, Hines’ companies have monthly revenue and expenses averaging about $200,000 — “far less than the millions of dollars in payroll that Hines sought in the PPP applications,” a criminal affidavit said.
The loan program is facing similar efforts made by other business owners, who have discovered that the SBA, which is providing the guarantees to banks for the loans, isn’t vetting the applications closely – or in some cases not at all. This is how Hines was able to get his hands on nearly $4 million.
After his SBA loans were approved, Bank of America began depositing hundreds of thousands of dollars in Hines’ business accounts. He then wired $318,497 to Lamborghini Miami on May 18. The Huracan Evo was registered jointly to Hines and his business, the newspaper reported.
Although he appears to be a scam artist, he’s not necessarily a spendthrift — relatively speaking. According to the criminal affidavit, he still had a balance of $3,463,162 in his accounts.
ALYI Highlights Next Steps
Dallas, TX – October 20, 2020 – OTC PR WIRE – Alternet Systems, Inc. (OTC PINK: ALYI) today announced plans to publish a comprehensive progress update next week targeting a Wednesday, October 28th release date.
Management indicates a number of major endeavors underway in important stages of development to include RevoltTOKEN financing partner’s efforts to finalize ICO details, next steps after finalizing the multiparty milestone agreement announced last week, and a new design path development for the company’s long-term plans for future electric vehicles in Africa.
Management anticipates wrapping up details on the above-mentioned endeavors by next Wednesday and being ready to release a comprehensive update.
For more information and to stay up to date on ALYI’s latest developments, please visit www.alternetsystemsinc.com.
Disclaimer/Safe Harbor: This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Securities Litigation Reform Act. The statements reflect the Company’s current views with respect to future events that involve risks and uncertainties. Among others, these risks include the expectation that any of the companies mentioned herein will achieve significant sales, the failure to meet schedule or performance requirements of the companies’ contracts, the companies’ liquidity position, the companies’ ability to obtain new contracts, the emergence of competitors with greater financial resources and the impact of competitive pricing. In the light of these uncertainties, the forward-looking events referred to in this release might not occur.
Alternet Systems, Inc. Contact:
GM Debuts Even Quicker Fourth-Generation Magnetic Ride Control
It’s been almost 20 years since Cadillac first introduced their nifty MagneRide technology on the Cadillac STS Seville, and, at the time, was pretty groundbreaking stuff, offering technology that would adjust and adapt suspension components of a vehicle in real-time in response to changes in terrain. Now on its fourth generation, MagneRide 4.0 gets a number of substantial upgrades across the board making it, in Cadillac’s own words, the world’s fastest reacting suspension technology. And with up to 45% faster damping response than the third generation, we kinda believe that claim.
According to Cadillac, these are the most dramatic changes yet to the MagneRide system yet, and will elevate the driving performance and road-going comfort of the 2021 Cadillac CT4-V, CT5-V, CT5 Sport, and Escalade. “With MagneRide 4.0, the world’s fastest reacting suspension system is now even faster,” said Thomas Schinderle, Cadillac vehicle performance engineer. “When paired with our sedans’ award-winning rear-wheel-drive architecture, the result is two of the most responsive sport sedans on the market, with reflexes that elevate the already high threshold of the V-Series legacy.”
MagneRide is an active damping system that literally uses electromagnets and magnetorheological fluid to help vary the damping rate of the shock absorbers. Wheel accelerometers read the road up to 1,000 times a second, triggering adjustments in the magnetic charge in the fluid. This fluid then adjusts the shocks almost instantly, allowing the vehicle to better respond to different road surfaces and corners, maximizing the traction on the road at all times.
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Every facet of the previous MagneRide system was improved to create version 4.0, with new wheel hub accelerometers, an inertial measurement unit that processes changes four times faster and is more precise, new temperature maps for the fluid, new flux control to provide more consistent and more accurate changes between rebound and compression, reduced damper friction for more pronounced differences between drive modes, and new software and hardware to help the vehicle remain more level when transitioning through corners.
MagneRide 4.0 comes standard on the 2021 Cadillac CT4-V in rear-wheel drive and CT5-V and starts at $45,8901 and $48,7901, respectively. The 2021 CT5 Sport can get MagenRide 4.0 as part of an optional V Performance Package, plus suspension performance upgrades and a mechanical limited-slip diff. The 2021 Cadillac Escalade will have MagneRide 4.0 on the Sport and Platinum models as standard, which starts at $86,8901 and $101,2901, respectively. The Premium Luxury trim may get MagneRide 4.0 as part of an optional Performance Package.
BMW Gives Android Auto, Other Freebies To 750,000 Owners In OTA Update
In 2012, Wired reported that Tesla would deliver the auto industry’s first over-the-air (OTA) update to more than 100 Model S sedans. Fast forward to 2020, and BMW has announced it’ll deliver a free OTA update to more than 750,000 cars in markets worldwide. BMW OS 7 and the Remote Software Upgrade tech allow the automaker to update existing features while introducing completely new ones, like adding wireless Android Auto for the first time.
Google’s in-car connectivity software joins Apple CarPlay that has already been available in BMW models, though there’s a lot more included in the update. BMW is updating its proprietary map software for an “entirely new navigation experience.” BMW says its cloud-based system can calculate routes faster by combining real-time info with forecast models. Even CarPlay gets some love with turn-by-turn directions and lane information that’s now viewable in the head-up display. Oh, and there’s no mention of an Android Auto subscription.
BMW’s other new features try to make the driving a bit less frustrating. BMW’s Connected Parking, which helps drivers find parking spots and shows the probability of a spot being open, can now consider the vehicle’s size when assisting. BMW’s eDrive Zones can automatically switch the vehicle to its pure electric driving mode through geofencing. So far, 90 European cities have established such zones. Even BMW’s Intelligent Personal Assistant is a bit smarter, distinguishing between whether the driver or passenger is speaking.
OTA updates for cars didn’t exist a decade ago. But today, BMW, Ford, GM, and others are offering it, or they will be offering it soon. It is just one example of how pure vehicles are changing, highlighting their rapid digitalization and increased connectivity, enabling a host of new and interesting features. Pair that with electric vehicles, and you have a rapidly changing automotive landscape. All you have to do is download it.
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