Tech Transfer eNews Blog

Company owner going to jail for fraud in grant funding schemes

By Jesse Schwartz
Published: September 21st, 2022

Two tech companies and their owner have been sentenced in federal court for defrauding government agencies as well as the SBIR/STTR programs.

Juan Guillermo Gonzalez and his companies, Accelogic LLC and Intellectual Property Systems LLC (Intellep), have been sentenced by U.S. District Judge Aileen M. Cannon for obtaining information from U.S. agencies and improperly using it for financial gain.

Judge Cannon sentenced Gonzalez to 32 months in federal prison, followed by one year of supervised release, and ordered him to pay $1.7 million in restitution. She also ordered Accelogic and Intellep to pay $2.9 million and placed them on probation for three years.

Gonzalez used the two companies to acquire research and development (R&D) contracts with several U.S. departments including the Army, the Air Force, the Department of Energy, NASA, and the Missile Defense Agency. He would submit software improvement proposals to them, claiming that he had formed partnerships with renowned academic researchers and technology developers who would perform the work. In reality, his companies did the work themselves or farmed it out to cheap contractors and kept the research funds that were supposed to go to the institutions Gonzalez claimed he had partnered with. In many cases, the work never got done at all, yet Gonzalez still routed the funds to himself through Accelogic and Intellep.

In addition, Gonzalez obtained funding through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs.

“Fraud in the Small Business Innovation Research program harms our nation’s scientific and technological advancement and diverts valuable tax dollars from their intended purpose,” says Department of Energy Inspector General Teri L. Donaldson. “These sentencings are the result of our efforts to protect these important funds. We appreciate the efforts of the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our law enforcement partners on this joint investigation.”

Juan Antonio Gonzalez, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, comments, “As lucrative as it may seem to defraud the federal government and its programs, those who try eventually end up in prison. The sentences handed out in this case should serve as a warning to those who may be tempted to try.”

Source: Southern District of Florida

Posted under: Tech Transfer e-News