CHARLOTTE, NC (AP / WBTV) – Federal attorneys say a North Carolina woman lied to get nearly $ 150,000 in coronavirus aid that she later spent shopping.
Jasmine Johnnae Clifton, 24, appeared in court on Monday after being charged with two disaster-related fraud allegations last week, according to a US Attorney’s press release.
The press release said Clifton has applied for an aid loan to help existing small businesses that have been hurt by the closure of a pandemic. It said she had forged documents for an online clothing store that had been closed since 2019.
A state grand jury indicted Clifton on February 17th of remittance fraud in relation to disaster benefits and fraud related to disaster or emergency services. According to the allegations, Clifton carried out a scheme to defraud the SBA by obtaining a loan for economic damage based on false information.
Clifton is accused of starting an online retail business, Jazzy Jas LLC, in April 2019. “On July 24, 2020, Clifton filed a fraudulent loan application for Jazzy Jas with the SBA even though the company had been liquidated by Clifton for several months.” Clifton received $ 149,900 as a result of the fraudulent application.
The press release said she spent the money in diamond stores and luxury clothing stores. Your defense attorney declined to comment.
Clifton was released on bail. The disaster benefits remittance fraud charge carries a maximum prison sentence of 30 years and a fine of $ 1,000,000. The maximum penalty for fraud related to disaster or emergency services is 30 years in prison and a fine of $ 250,000.
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