A Gwinnett County, Georgia woman has been charged in a federal indictment with leading a scheme to submit dozens of fraudulent applications for COVID-19 small business relief funding.
Ashlee Parker, 39, of Dacula, Georgia, is charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud; seven counts of wire fraud; false document; Money laundering conspiracy; and misrepresentation, said David H. Estes, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. The main charge carries a legal sentence if convicted of up to 30 years in federal prison, followed by up to five years of supervised release, as well as substantial financial penalties and restitution. to the US government. There is no parole in the federal system.
“The CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act) was funded to help small businesses dealing with the effects of a global pandemic,” U.S. Attorney Estes said. “In too many cases, however, it has been exploited by those seeking to leverage these relief programs for personal gain. With our diligent law enforcement partners, we will continue to identify and hold accountable anyone who breaks the law to siphon off money from these programs.
As described in the indictment, Parker owns Proficient Tax LLC, The Harris Parker Group LLC and AMP Credit Solutions LLC. The indictment alleges that between May 2020 and approximately April 2021, Parker submitted more than two dozen fraudulent Economic Disaster Loan (EIDL) applications to the U.S. Small Business Administration on his behalf on behalf of The Harris Parker Group LLC, AMP Credit Solutions LLC, and other companies. The co-conspirators also allegedly paid Proficient Tax LLC in exchange for Parker submitting fraudulent claims on their behalf for funding for EIDL and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
The indictment alleges that “as a result of Parker’s scheme, the United States was defrauded of more than $2 million” and that Parker transferred $13,955 of the fraudulent proceeds to a cosmetic surgery clinic” for a breast augmentation procedure and a tummy tuck with flank liposuction”.
Indictments only contain charges; the accused are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
The case is being investigated by the FBI and the Office of the Inspector General of the Small Business Administration, and is being prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jonathan A. Porter and Ryan C Grover.
Anyone with information about alleged attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via NCDF’s online complaint form at: https://www. .justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.