Maryland Resident Charged with Preparing and Submitting Fraudulent Applications for Cares Act Financial Assistance
According to the indictment, between about April 19, 2021, and May 20, 2021, GAVIN, his significant other (Shaniqua Wilson), and a third individual, Siedah Eley, recruited friends and family members, primarily via word of mouth and text message, to participate in a scheme to fraudulently obtain money from Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans with her assistance. They then created and electronically submitted loan applications, that falsely claimed that each applicant had a sole proprietorship in the beauty industry that generated substantial income from such business. GAVIN, Wilson, and Eley charged some of the applicants she recruited up to approximately $5,000.00, once the PPP loan was funded. Among the individuals for whom they filed a false PPP application was a resident of Metairie, Louisiana, who was then employed with a City of New Orleans agency.
GAVIN faces a maximum term of imprisonment of five (5) years as to Count One and twenty (20) years as to Count Two. GAVIN also faces three years of supervised release, up to a $250,000 fine, and a $100 mandatory special assessment fee per count.
U. S. Attorney Evans reiterated that an indictment is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
For more information on the Department of Justice’s response to the pandemic, please visit https://www.justice.gov/coronavirus. Anyone with information about allegations of attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF Web Complaint Form at https://www.justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.
U.S. Attorney Evans praised the work of the United States Secret Service in investigating this matter. Assistant United States Attorney Jordan Ginsberg, Chief of the Public Integrity Unit, is in charge of the prosecution.
Community Outreach Coordinator
U.S. Attorney Office
Eastern District of Louisiana
Updated September 29, 2023