The site reports that Arkansas Mo “pled guilty to 6 counts of federal bank fraud.” In exchange for pleading guilty, fourteen additional charges were dropped. Authorities also recommended he received a little over twelve years for his crimes.
According to @tmz_tv, he was facing thirty years before striking the plea deal.
As previously reported, “The defendant allegedly stole money meant to assist hard-hit employees and businesses during these difficult times, and instead greedily used the money to bankroll his lavish purchases of jewelry and other personal items,” said Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “The department will remain steadfast in our efforts to root out and prosecute frauds against the Paycheck Protection Program.”
Officials say Arkansas Mo allegedly took advantage of the emergency lending provisions of the PPP that were intended to assist employees and small businesses affected by the Coronavirus.
“We will investigate and charge anyone who inappropriately diverts these critical funds for their own personal gain,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak of the Northern District of Georgia.
Officials said Mo “egregiously sought” personal gain from the program, which is intended to assist hardworking Americans during this challenging time.
According to the charges and other information presented in court, Mo is the sole owner of a Georgia corporation called Flame Trucking. On April 15th, Mo signed and submitted to United Community Bank (UCB) a PPP loan application in the name of Flame Trucking stating that the business had 107 employees and an average monthly payroll of $1,490,200.
In seeking a loan in the amount of $3,725,500, Mo certified that the loan proceeds would be used to “retain workers and maintain payroll or make mortgage interest payments, lease payments, and utility payments, as specified under the Paycheck Protection Program Rule.”
UCB ultimately funded the loan for $2,045,800. Within days of receiving the funds, Mo allegedly used more than $1.5 million of the PPP loan proceeds to purchase $85,000 in jewelry, including a Rolex Presidential watch, a diamond bracelet, a 5.73 carat diamond ring for himself, and to pay $40,000 in child support that he owed.
“Such payments are not an authorized use of PPP funds under the CARES Act,” the news release said.