Bucks County Man Pleads Guilty to “Ponzi” Schemes, Money Laundering, and Stealing Over $6 Million in Federal Pandemic Relief Funds
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Pennsylvania
PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jacqueline C. Romero announced that Stanislav Bril, 40, a/k/a “Stan Bril,” a/k/a “Slava Bril,” a resident of Jamison, Pennsylvania, entered a plea of guilty on October 30, 2023 before United States District Judge Gene E.K. Pratter to three counts of mail fraud, eleven counts of wire fraud, five counts of bank fraud, and five counts of money laundering, all arising from Bril’s operation of two different Ponzi schemes, his false applications for bank loans, his defrauding of the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (“EIDL”) program, and related conduct.
“The U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue leading the charge with our law enforcement partners to hold Stanislav Bril and other fraudsters accountable for their schemes,” said U.S. Attorney Romero. “These fraud schemes impact us all, from individual investors to taxpayers. We also appreciated the public’s assistance and cooperation in bringing these cases.”
“Over the course of ten years, Bril perpetrated multiple fraud schemes, stealing variously from investors, a bank, and the U.S. government,” said Richard Langham, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division. “Fortunately, the FBI and our partners are experts at ensuring criminals like him are held accountable.”
“IRS-Criminal Investigation is proud to have provided its financial expertise in this investigation,” said IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Yury Kruty. “We, along with our law enforcement partners and the Department of Justice, are committed to aggressively investigating individuals who engage in money laundering, tax fraud, or other types of white-collar crimes.”
From October 2011 to August 2014, Bril operated a “Ponzi” scheme through his company, Mortgage Consultant Group (“MCG”), obtaining over $1 million from investors and using much of these funds for his own benefit and to perpetuate the scheme. Bril approached investors and persuaded them to make capital loan investments in MCG. In his marketing materials and his sales pitches to investors, Bril falsely claimed that these investments would enable MCG to make loans on real estate and construction projects or enable MCG to make short-term, high interest loans. Bril falsely promised that investors would obtain regular returns, or “interest,” on their capital loan investments in MCG. Rather than use investors’ funds as promised, Bril used the vast majority of the funds to pay himself, his family, and his personal expenses – including his gambling losses at casinos – and to perpetuate his scheme by occasionally making “interest” payments to some investors.
From October 2018 to June 2021, Bril fraudulently obtained a $750,000 line of credit from a bank headquartered in Scranton, Pennsylvania for another company he created, The Bril Group, Inc. (“TBG”). In order to secure the line of credit, Bril made false statements about TBG’s business, the number of TBG employees he was hiring, and the intended use of the line of credit. Once he obtained the line of credit, Bril caused those funds to be spent on unauthorized purchases and laundered a significant portion of those funds through various bank accounts.
From April 2020 to March 2021, Bril fraudulently obtained over $6.7 million from the Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (“EIDL”) and Paycheck Protection Programs (“PPP”) by making false statements about the number of employees of, the wages and payroll taxes paid by, and the intended use of the loan proceeds by several companies that Bril created. Bril falsely claimed that these companies – TBG, MCG LOAN, and SAB Services LLC – had several hundred employees when in fact none of these companies had more than one employee. In his PPP and EIDL applications, Bril submitted allegedly historical tax forms with inflated payroll information for nonexistent employees that had never actually been filed. In addition, Bril falsely denied that there were criminal charges pending against him at the time of his applications. In fact, federal charges were already pending against Bril for his perpetration of the Ponzi scheme detailed above. Once he fraudulently obtained these funds, Bril wired them to other individuals, cryptocurrency platforms, and a title company towards a purchase of a Los Angeles condominium. Bril also laundered a significant portion of those funds through various bank accounts and transactions.
From July 2019 to at least August 2021, Bril revived MCG and used it to perpetrate yet another “Ponzi” scheme, obtaining millions of dollars in loans from several investors and using these funds for his own benefit and to perpetuate the scheme. Bril initially took short-term loans from investors and repaid investors with high interest rates to lull them into a false sense of security and to obtain larger loans from them. In his sales pitches to investors, Bril falsely claimed that their loans would enable MCG to make loans on real estate and construction projects and/or enable MCG to make short-term, high-interest loans. However, Bril provided investors with few details of these purported projects and declined to identify his purported borrowers. Bril often encouraged investors to “rollover” their loans into new deals rather than take their payouts per their agreements with Bril. When investors asked Bril whether he had any claims, lawsuits, or legal proceedings filed against him, Bril falsely answered in the negative despite his knowledge that federal charges were already pending against him for his perpetration of the earlier Ponzi scheme. When Bril began missing the agreed repayments to investors, Bril provided bogus explanations for his theft of their loans, including that he was waiting for a wire to clear, that he waiting for a check to be mailed from his bank, that he was looking for a new bank, that his new bank was giving him a “hard time,” and that he was suffering from a variety of health emergencies and personal tragedies that were somehow preventing him from making timely paying to the investors. Rather than use investors’ funds as promised, Bril used the funds to pay himself, his family, and his personal expenses – including trading in digital currencies – and to perpetuate his schemes by occasionally making “interest” payments to some investors.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Vineet Gauri and Matthew T. Newcomer.
Updated November 3, 2023