CHARLOTTE, N.C. – U.S. Legal professional Andrew Murray introduced that Jasmine Johnnae Clifton, 24, of Charlotte, appeared in courtroom as we speak on federal fees, for fraudulently acquiring a COVID-19 mortgage for nearly $150,000 from the U.S. Small Enterprise Administration (SBA).
Matthew D. Line, Particular Agent in Cost of the Inside Income Service, Prison Investigation Division, Charlotte Subject Workplace (IRS-CI), and Tommy D. Coke, Inspector in Cost of the Atlanta Division of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, which oversees Charlotte, be a part of U.S. Legal professional Murray in making as we speak’s announcement.
On Wednesday, February 17, 2021, a federal grand jury sitting in Charlotte indicted Clifton on fees of wire fraud in relation to a catastrophe profit, and fraud in reference to main catastrophe or emergency advantages. In response to allegations within the prison invoice of indictment, Clifton engaged in a scheme to defraud the SBA by acquiring an Financial Harm Catastrophe Mortgage (EIDL) based mostly on false data.
The CARES Act is a federal legislation enacted March 29, 2020, and it’s designed to offer emergency monetary help to hundreds of thousands of People struggling the financial results attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic. The CARES Act established a number of new short-term applications and supplied for the growth of others, together with the EIDL program, which is an SBA program that gives low-interest financing to small companies, renters, and owners in areas affected by declared disasters.
The indictment alleges that Clifton created Jazzy Jas LLC, a web based retail clothes gross sales enterprise, in April 2019. On July 24, 2020, Clifton submitted a fraudulent mortgage software to the SBA for Jazzy Jas, regardless of the very fact the corporate had been dissolved by Clifton a number of months prior. Because of the fraudulent software, which included false details about revenues and a fraudulent tax doc, Clifton obtained $149,900 in catastrophe aid funds that have been supposed to be supplied to an current enterprise harmed by the COVID-19 pandemic. On or about August 14, 2020, the EIDL funds have been deposited immediately into Clifton’s checking account. Clifton allegedly used the federal government funds to make purchases at quite a few retail shops, together with at Nordstrom, Ikea, Neiman Marcus, Rooms To Go, Louis Vuitton, Greatest Purchase and different retail buying shops. Clifton additionally made purchases at a number of diamond shops.
Clifton was launched on bond following as we speak’s courtroom look. The cost of wire fraud in relation to catastrophe profit carries a most jail time period of 30 years and a $1,000,000 superb. The utmost penalty for fraud in reference to main catastrophe or emergency advantages is 30 years in jail and a $250,000 superb.
The fees within the indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed harmless until and till confirmed responsible past cheap doubt in a courtroom of legislation.
In making as we speak’s announcement U.S. Legal professional Murray thanked IRS-CI and USPIS for his or her investigation which led to the fees.
Assistant U.S. Legal professional William Bozin, of the U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace in Charlotte, is prosecuting the case.
The Division of Justice and the U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace for the Western District of North Carolina stay vigilant in detecting, investigating, and prosecuting wrongdoing associated to the COVID-19 pandemic. When you suppose you’re a sufferer of coronavirus fraud or have data pertaining to fraud involving COVID-19, contact the Nationwide Heart for Catastrophe Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721 or submit a criticism on-line utilizing the NCDF Web Complaint Form. Members of the general public within the Western District of North Carolina are additionally inspired to name 704-344-6222 to succeed in their native Coronavirus Fraud Coordinator.