Georgia man, Paul Penn sentenced after admitting fraud in attempt to sell 50 million non-existent N-95 face masks to foreign government
U.S. Secret Service lauded for stopping $317 million scheme
SAVANNAH, GA (STL.News) A Georgia man has been sentenced after admitting he attempted to sell 50 million non-existent facemasks to a foreign government.
Paul Penn, 64, of Johns Creek, Ga., was sentenced to five months and 29 days of home confinement by U.S. District Court Judge R. Stan Baker after pleading guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud, said Bobby L. Christine, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. Judge Baker also fined Penn $1,500 and ordered him to serve three years of probation.
“If not for the vigilance of the U.S. Secret Service, Paul Penn and his co-conspirators likely would have lit the fuse on an international scandal by ripping off a friendly foreign government for more than $300 million,” said U.S. Attorney Christine. “Instead, they halted the scheme before the criminals got a dime, and prevented these crooks from profiting from pandemic fear.”
As described in court documents and testimony, Penn, through his company, Spectrum Global Holdings, LLC, agreed with unnamed co-conspirators to act as a middleman in the attempted sale of 50 million 3M Model 1860 Respirator Masks that he and his co-conspirators did not actually possess.