Co-Conspirator of Reputed “Godfather of Payday Lending” Sentenced to Prison and Ordered to Forfeit $9,621,800
PHILADELPHIA, PA – U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain announced today that Adrian Rubin, 61, of Jenkintown, was sentenced to 37 months’ imprisonment and three years’ supervised release, ordered to pay a $100,000 fine and $400 special assessment, and ordered to forfeit $9,621,800 in proceeds from his crimes. Rubin previously admitted to collecting unlawful debt from payday loans and helping his sons, Blake and Chase Rubin, orchestrate a multi-million-dollar telemarketing scam.
Adrian Rubin previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”), one count of conspiracy, and two counts of mail fraud. The RICO conspiracy charge arose from Rubin’s participation in a conspiracy to collect debt from so-called “payday loans” – short-term consumer loans that typically come due on the borrower’s next payday – that had annual interest rates exceeding 780 percent. Such loans are illegal in Pennsylvania and many other states. Rubin admitted that in 2012, he collected $2,069,327 in payday loan debt.
Rubin’s RICO co-conspirators included Charles M. Hallinan, the reputed “godfather of payday lending,” and Wheeler K. Neff, who served as Hallinan and Rubin’s lawyer. Rubin admitted that he conspired with Hallinan and Neff to hide his payday lending behind a California-based Indian tribe for the purpose of circumventing state usury laws. Hallinan and Neff were both convicted by a federal jury last November of RICO and other charges. In July 2018, Judge Robreno sentenced Hallinan to 14 years’ imprisonment. In May 2018, Judge Robreno sentenced Neff to eight years’ imprisonment.
Rubin also obtained $7,552,473 in proceeds from an illegal telemarketing scheme to defraud more than 70,000 people into purchasing worthless credit cards. The credit cards were marketed as the Platinum Trust Card and the Express Platinum Card and were based on false and misleading representations that the products worked like regular credit cards and could help customers establish or improve their credit. Chase Rubin also was sentenced today to 32 months’ imprisonment, filed $100,000, and ordered to pay forfeiture and restitution. Blake Rubin is scheduled to be sentenced on August 8, 2018, and another co-conspirator, Justin Diaczuk, is scheduled to be sentenced on August 14, 2018.
In addition to the prison sentence imposed today, Judge Robreno ordered Rubin to forfeit $2,069,327 in payday loan proceeds and all $7,552,473 in proceeds from the telemarketing scam.
“The attorneys and staff in our Office work diligently to secure the criminal forfeiture of assets obtained through ill-gotten gains,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain. “The sentences and sizable forfeiture judgment we obtained in this case proves that we will do everything within our power to ensure that crime does not pay.”
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations, and the United States Postal Inspection Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mark Dubnoff and Joel Sweet, and the forfeiture filings were handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Maria Carrillo.