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Press Release

Charlotte Man Is Sentenced To More Than Four Years In Prison For Bank Fraud Scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of North Carolina

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Dino Crnalic, 36, of Charlotte, was sentenced today to 51 months in prison for a bank and wire fraud scheme that defrauded the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and others of more than $800,000, announced Dena J. King, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. U.S. District Judge Max O. Cogburn Jr. also ordered Crnalic to pay more than $910,000 as restitution and to serve two years under court supervision after he is released from prison.

According to information contained in filed documents and court proceedings, from July 2017 through November 2019, Crnalic executed multiple fraudulent schemes and obtained more than $800,000 in SBA-backed loans and attempted to obtain an additional loan from federally-insured financial institutions. Crnalic also fraudulently obtained other forms of financing through other entities. Crnalic claimed that the loans would be used to fund various businesses in Charlotte, including a restaurant, Suki Akor, and Surge Fitness Centers, LLC (Surge). Court records show that, to secure the SBA-backed loans and other financing, Crnalic submitted fraudulent loan documents and made various false statements regarding the purpose of the loans and financing and the involvement of other individuals. In reality, Crnalic lied about the involvement of other individuals in the businesses and, rather than using the loans to finance his business ventures, Crnalic used a significant portion of the proceeds to pay for personal expenses, including trips to various casinos.

On April 13, 2021, Crnalic pleaded guilty to two counts of financial institution fraud, concealment money laundering, making a false statement to a bank in connection with a loan, and wire fraud.

In making today’s announcement, U.S. Attorney King credited the Charlotte Division of the FBI and the SBA’s Office of the Inspector General for the investigation of this case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Ryan, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte, is prosecuting the case.

Updated September 29, 2022

Financial Fraud