A Tennessee man of Indian origin was charged with two counts of wire fraud and was scheduled to make an initial appearance before a New Jersey judge Aug. 28, 2020, announced U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito of the District of New Jersey.
Ketan Ghutadaria, 50, of Johnson City, Tennessee, is charged by complaint with two counts of wire fraud and was scheduled to appear by videoconference before U.S. Magistrate Judge Edward S. Kiel.
The charge of wire fraud carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, or twice the gross pecuniary gain or loss from the offense, whichever is greater. However, the charges and allegations in the complaint are merely accusations, and Ghutadaria is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Ghutadaria was arrested in Tennessee on Aug. 13, 2020, by inspectors of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) and appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cynthia Richardson Wyrick in Greenville, Tennessee, federal court.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court, the press release says that from March 2018 through September 2018, Ghutadaria is alleged to have used a company’s bank account information to pay off his personal financial debts and without prior approval or authorization.
He is alleged to have authorized companies to submit Automated Clearing House (ACH) debit transactions for bill payments, which were deducted from the victim company’s bank account in New York. During many of these transactions, Ghutadaria falsely represented that he was the authorized account holder for the victim company’s bank account.
Ghutadaria reportedly used some of the fraudulently obtained funds to pay for a new 2017 Audi Q7 and a new 2017 Audi A6, the press release says. He allegedly authorized 31 fraudulent ACH debit transactions utilizing the victim company’s bank account information.