ATLANTA -- A Duluth man was sentenced Wednesday to serve more than seven years in federal prison on charges of bank fraud, wire fraud and aggravated identity theft.
According to a U.S. Attorney, Philip Swindall, 50, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Steven C. Jones for being involved in multiple fraud scheumes while selling cars in the metro Atlanta area over the last decade.
Information presented in court claimed that Swindall's first scheme began in April 2004, while he was operating Atlanta Chrysler Dodge. According to U.S. Attorney Sally Yates, Swindall applied for and received $8.2 million in loans and credit from SouthTrust Bank, which is now Wells Fargo, to fund and operate Atlanta Chrysler Dodge.
"In addition, Swindall persuaded his silent business partner to put up $4.7 million in collateral, including that partner's $2.3 Colorado home."
By the summer of 2005, bank auditors discovered Swindall was more than $3.5 million in debt. According to Yates, auditors claimed that Swindall had used the $3.5 million to operate another dealership, pay off his credit cards and "live a high-end lifestyle for himself and his family, which included foreign vacations and paying household expenses and household employees."
Yates said another scheme began in 2009 when Swindall opened another dealership, Auto Tailor Inc., in Duluth. Over the next year he purchased more than 30 cars from other dealers "either on consignment or by sending the dealers insufficient fund checks. He then sold the cars to customers online through eBay."
According to court evidence, he pocketed more than $490,000 and never provided customers with titles to the cars or paid the other dealers.
Yates said that in 2009, Swindall "engaged in identify theft by using an employee's name and other personal information to obtain a $175,000 loan from Dealer Service Corporation.
Swindall was sentenced to seven years, six months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release. He also was ordered to pay about $8.5 million in restitution.