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Press Release

Pinellas County Man Sentenced To Nine Years In Federal Prison For Student Loan Fraud

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, FL - United States District Judge Susan Bucklew today sentenced James Isaac Boyd (40, St. Petersburg) to 9 years in federal prison for conspiring to commit student loan fraud, committing student loan fraud, and aggravated identity theft. In addition, he was ordered to pay restitution to the Department of Education in the amount of $464,269.00, and to forfeit computers and cellphones used in the commission of the offenses.

According to court documents and information presented in court, in January 2006, James I. Boyd and Shaneva Boyd formed a Florida corporation called "Graduate Assistance and Consolidations (GAC)," located in St. Petersburg Florida. James Boyd was the sole director, president and treasurer of GAC. He and co-conspirator Shaneva Boyd used GAC to carry out a student loan fraud scheme by assisting individuals who had neither a high school diploma nor a General Equivalency Degree (GED) with fraudulently enrolling for admission at St. Petersburg College (SPC), and then fraudulently applying for federal student financial aid. During the course of this scheme, James Boyd caused false statements to be made on student financial aid forms. He also directed dozens of financial aid checks for various individuals to be mailed to addresses associated with GAC. On some occasions, when the individuals named on the checks negotiated the checks, they paid James Boyd a significant percentage of the proceeds. On other occasions, James Boyd falsely and fraudulently endorsed and negotiated financial aid checks made out to putative students, without those individuals' knowledge, often depositing the checks into bank accounts he controlled. James Boyd assisted individuals with applying for fraudulent federal student financial aid (loans and grants) totaling $464,269.00.

Boyd pleaded guilty on October 23, 2012. During the hearing today, details about Boyd’s previous criminal history were discussed. His criminal history includes a prior state conviction for murder in the third degree and a prior federal conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

This case was investigated by United States Department of Education, Office of Inspector General. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Cherie L. Krigsman.

Updated January 26, 2015