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Press Release

Former Assistant Atlanta City Attorney and police officer charged in $7 million PPP fraud scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Georgia

ATLANTA - Shelitha Robertson, who formerly served as an Assistant City Attorney and a police officer for the City of Atlanta, has been indicted for an alleged scheme to defraud the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a federal stimulus program authorized as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

“Robertson allegedly stole millions of dollars in taxpayer money intended to help small businesses stay afloat during the pandemic,” said U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan. “CARES Act loans were designed to help sustain small businesses during the pandemic, not to serve as a source of personal enrichment.  We will continue to vigorously investigate and prosecute anyone who fraudulently obtains these critical funds.”

“This indictment charges the defendant with defrauding a government stimulus program designed to help those most in need during the pandemic,” said Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Inspector General Jay N. Lerner.  “We will continue to work with U.S. Attorneys and our law enforcement partners to hold accountable individuals that aim to undermine the integrity of the banking sector. Trusted members of our communities, such as former law enforcement officers and public officials, should be held to the highest standards.”

“The Paycheck Protection Program was intended to help businesses keep their workforce employed during the COVID-19 crisis, not to fund a personal lifestyle,” said U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Inspector General Eastern Region Special Agent in Charge Amaleka McCall-Brathwaite. “OIG is committed to rooting out bad actors and protecting the integrity of SBA programs. I want to thank the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our law enforcement partners for their dedication and pursuit of justice.”

“The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration aggressively pursues those who attempt to abuse the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act and its Paycheck Protection Program, which was created to assist legitimate business owners during the pandemic,” said J. Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.  “We appreciate the efforts of our law enforcement partners and the U.S. Attorney’s Office to ensure individuals engaged in criminal activity are held to account.”

According to U.S. Attorney Buchanan, the charges, and other information presented in court: Shelitha Robertson and other co-conspirators allegedly submitted fraudulent PPP loan applications on behalf of various companies they owned and controlled. The indictment alleges that Robertson fraudulently obtained over $7 million in PPP loan funds, which was not used for payroll or other permitted business expenses. Robertson allegedly used loan proceeds to purchase luxury items, including a Rolls-Royce, a motorcycle, and jewelry, and to transfer funds to family members and co-conspirators.

Shelitha Robertson, 60, of Atlanta, is charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering.  Members of the public are reminded that the indictment only contains charges.  The defendant is presumed innocent of the charges and it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Office of Inspector General (FDIC-OIG), the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Inspector General (SBA-OIG), and Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA).

Assistant U.S. Attorney Bernita Malloy, and Trial Attorney Ariel Glasner of the DOJ Criminal Division’s Fraud Section, are prosecuting the case.

The Fraud Section leads the Criminal Division’s prosecution of fraud schemes that exploit the PPP. Since the inception of the CARES Act, the Fraud Section has prosecuted over 192 defendants in more than 121 criminal cases and has seized over $78 million in cash proceeds derived from fraudulently obtained PPP funds, as well as numerous real estate properties and luxury items purchased with such proceeds. More information can be found at

In May 2021 the Attorney General established the COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force to marshal the resources of the Department of Justice in partnership with agencies across government to enhance efforts to combat and prevent pandemic-related fraud. The Task Force bolsters efforts to investigate and prosecute the most culpable domestic and international criminal actors and assists agencies tasked with administering relief programs to prevent fraud by augmenting and incorporating existing coordination mechanisms, identifying resources and techniques to uncover fraudulent actors and their schemes, and sharing and harnessing information and insights gained from prior enforcement efforts. For more information on the department’s response to the pandemic, please visit

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 via the NCDF Web Complaint Form at

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is

Updated December 6, 2022

Financial Fraud