ASA could become the subject of a criminal probe led by FBI

ASA students celebrating Reny Kozman's b'day, a file photo.

ASA students celebrating Reny Kozman's b'day, a file photo.

American School of Aviation,  already besought with civil lawsuits, could become the subject of a criminal probe led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Merced County District Attorney Larry Morse II has asked the FBI to take a role into the investigation of the American School of Aviation. Morse said the district attorney’s office needs the FBI’s assistance in performing forensic accounting to discover if crimes were committed by Manpreet “Prince” Singh and his wife Reny Kozman, who co-owned the flight school along with partners in India.

“There are a variety of issues involving potential criminal fraud arising from the situation,” Morse wrote in the letter sent to the FBI.

As a matter of course, the FBI will not confirm if they are involved in a criminal investigation.

The students’ tuition fees were supposed to be kept in a trust account and charged as the students progressed through their flight training. A lawsuit filed by 52 of the students in July alleges that Singh directed the tuition directly into his own accounts. It accuses him of fraud, breach of contract and misrepresentation. Among the allegations made against the school and Singh is that they continued to recruit students despite knowing they could not provide the instruction as promised.

The students are seeking $2.2 million in refunds and punitive damages. The lawsuit was filed with the Merced County Superior Court, but the papers have not been served upon Singh because he hasn’t been located, according to attorney Palvir Shoker, who filed the lawsuit on behalf of the students.

A second set of 10 students has filed a similar lawsuit and is seeking $200,000. The lawsuit was filed by attorney Jeffrey Poindexter and claims that the students were directed to a fake ASA Web site where they could ostensibly keep track of how their tuition funds were being deducted. The complaints states: “This accounting system was set up to deceive and mislead the students. As soon as the students would make a tuition payment of $40,000, the defendants would spend all of the money. This allegation is premised upon the fact that the defendants have conceded they owe the refunds, but claim they have no money to pay the refunds…

“By immediately spending the entirety of a student’s tuition, without providing the promised flight training and education, the defendants either purposefully, recklessly or negligently began operating as a sort of ponzi scheme. Each new student’s tuition would go to pay the costs and expense of earlier enrolled students.”

Reny Kozman has previously blamed the school’s financial hardships on partners based in India, who she says stole the school’s money in her email to SecondCity last month.

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10 thoughts on “ASA could become the subject of a criminal probe led by FBI

  1. “FBI’s assistance in performing forensic accounting”?

    Is this what causing the DA’s office from moving forward swiftly?

    What happens then if the feds assistance isn’t forthcoming? The DA can’t prosecute the case and the perpetrator let go unpunished?

    “Potential criminal fraud” ? What potential criminal fraud, Mr. Morse?

    If those facts after facts of heinous deceptions are not actionable fraud, I don’t know what is.

    There already exists more than ample evidence with sufficiency to try the perpetrators in both criminal and civil venue. Two or three civil cases are pending at the Superior court of Merced County as I write, in fact one such case has been awarded a judgement by default already.

    The perpetrators are high flight risk (no pun intended) as the footprints of their aircraft shown up in the radar tracking system many outside of Merced County as far away as in Virginia, Texas, Utah and Oregon. APB for their arrest must be sought immediately to take them into custody before they disappear into sunset while the DA and the Sheriff further procrastinate by contemplating “forensic accounting” bit in ad infinitum, phew!!

    Echo Yankee, over & out.

  2. There are already enough tools to do the job in the county’s own front and back yard, never mind seeking a fed’s tool, and let them tend their own yard with their own tools.

    The county tools:
    California Penal Code §154 Debtor fraudulently removing, conveying,…
    California Penal Code §155 Defendant or judgement debtor fraudulently removing…
    California Penal Code §476a. Checks, drafts, insufficient fund
    California Penal Code §484b. Diversion of funds….
    California Penal Code §552 False pretenses
    California Penal Code §537 Defrauding innkeepers, etc.

    Do you still need to borrow a fed’s tool that you call “forensic accounting”, Mr. Morse?

    The Fed’s tools:
    United States Code Title 18 Crimes and Criminal Procedures
    USC 18 §31 Aircraft and Motor Vehicle
    USC 18 §241 Civil Rights
    USC 18 §371 Conspiracy
    USC 18 §641 Embezzlement and Theft
    USC 18 §1001 Fraud and False Statement
    USC 18 §1231 Labor
    USC 18 §1341 Mail Fraud
    USC 18 §1421 Nationality and Citizenship
    USC 18 §1821 Professions and Occupations
    USC 18 §1951 Racketeering
    USC 18 §2071 Records and Reports

    And, I’m sure there’re a whole lot more out there, INAL.

    Any competent prosecutor should be able to build a strong enough case to win a conviction given the sufficiency of evidence exists in the ASA case.

    Just my two cents.

    Echo Yankee, over & out!

  3. Latest news…Sources claim that there are students who are still flying in ASA and are living in the instructor housing.I would like to know if thats allowed because I guess if the school shuts down all operations should shut down too.I would request authorities to look into the matter and please end this facade because it is students such as these that actually encourage swines like Prince Singh to continue to swindle people.People like these should be arrested.What the Merced county is doing is still beyond me and why they haven’t taken appropriate action is not understandable.I think Prince is selling everything he has to fill these people’s pockets.The beggar should not be allowed to live among human beings.I have no expectation of getting my money back but I really want to see this so-called “Prince” become a pauper in all ways and be thrown into jail.If anyone is reading and can do something about it or at least give us some guidance as to what can be done,it will be greatly appreciated.This illegal activity definitely means that some county officials are also involved.

  4. My view from the sideline:

    Ex,
    Your outcry is heard loud and clear.
    However your notion to suggest that some county officials are involvement is bit of a stretch as I am very doubtful of that.

    Here’s what you can do:

    1. Go to Merced County Sheriff’s Department and get a Criminal Report Form http://www.mercedsheriff.com/
    2. Contact SABA and ask one of their lawyers to help prepar a crime report
    3. When it’s done, take it to the Sheriff’s Department and file it.
    4. Get a crime reference number (CRN )
    5. Tell everyone to do the same, more the better to place the case in a higher priority.
    6. Follow up on the status using your CRN
    7. Report on this blog from time to time to keep everyone updated.

    Despite over 100 students have been victimized, I begin to suspect no criminal report has ever been filed so far by any one of the ASA students and this explains why such a slow pace of investigative action.

    If that’s the case they are investigating the case with no criminal report filed,(victim) thus not getting much traction, is that it?

    Hang tight, you’ll all get through as when one door closes another one will open always and anything can happen.

    Echo Yankee, over & out!

  5. My view from the sideline:

    Question to all former ASA students who were the victims of criminal fraud:

    Question,
    Has anyone ever filed a crime report so far against Prince and Reny for a criminal fraud and received a crime reference number (CRN ) assigned by the sheriff’s department?………………….didn’t think so.

    Over 100 students were wronged, yet no victims officially exist as far as the sheriff’s department is concerned because no crime report was filed.

    Ignorance and assumptions are all too often dangerous.

    No wonder this isn’t getting any traction. Much to my surprise, there seems to be no crime report against Prince and Reny has ever been filed with Merced County Sheriff’s Department by any former ASA student. Only one filed so far appears to be the fuel supplier who was reported to be owed $56,000 unpaid fuel.

    Now onto your case, no matter how bad you want the duo to be put behind bars, just hoping and thinking doesn’t make it so. This is probably what’s transpiring: No criminal report filed→no criminal victim→no criminal charge brought forward That pretty much explains it. You all need to do what it takes by methodically following the established judicial procedures step by step. Here is what you need to do:

    1. Go to Merced County Sheriff’s Department and get a Criminal Report Form http://www.mercedsheriff.com/
    (If they don’t have the forms available get an instruction on how to prepare or better yet get a sample copy)

    2. Contact SABA and ask one of their lawyers to help preparing a crime report
    3. When it’s ready, take it to the Sheriff’s Department and file it.
    4. Get a crime reference number (CRN ) assigned to your case (this is used for follow up and status check)
    5. Tell everyone to do the same, more the better to place the case in a higher priority.
    6. Follow up on the status using your CRN
    7. Report on this blog from time to time to keep everyone posted until the justice is done.

    Echo Yankee, over & out!

  6. – My request from the sideline –

    In order for me to develop a viable legal strategy to bring both KFA and the banks and lenders to the negotiating table by means of lawsuit or otherwise, I need to know how the events occurred in what sequence. It appears they too are responsible in part to cause the loss of funds by the students in the ASA Ponzi scheme in the first place after all.

    Now, anyone can step forward and help me understand how did it all happen from the first day you became aware of the ASA and KFA program leading up to the day of the school closure?

    A detailed information about KFA involvement in India to induce enrollment to ASA would be very helpful.

    echo yankee, over↗

  7. i feel very sorry for those students who are the victims. that is prince’s proffesion to cheat people it its business or personal just like he cheated his wife which no one knows about he got married in 1998 to a indian girl. he has messed lots of peoples life got knows hows many kids he has and with how many different girls. his is going to pay for all these. i feel sorry for his parents that they have son this him. he must be a terrorist.

  8. prince needs to be put behind bars he has done so many bad things in his life
    having kids with other girls while married and cheating people is this hobby
    prince applied for asylum and then he got married a girl named asha got his green card cheated on her. he has pay for all dis

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