ATLANTA, Ga. (CW69 News at 10) – A grand jury indicted six individuals, operating as part of a larger group, for fraudulently obtaining approximately $1.5 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans on behalf of five businesses based in Georgia and South Carolina, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s office.
Five others involved in this scheme have already pleaded guilty.READ MORE: MARTA Displays Artwork Celebrating 'Joyful Moments In Black Culture'
According to Acting U.S. Attorney Bobby L. Christine, the charges and other information presented in court: Rodericque Thompson allegedly recruited Micah Baisden, Travis Crosby, Keith Maloney, Tabronx Smith, and Thomas Wilson to apply for PPP loans on behalf of their respective businesses:
- PowerHouse Sports Academy, LLC
- Faithful Transport Services, LLC
- KMJ Transport, LLC
- Market Yourself, LLC
- Rare Breed Nation, LLC
In exchange for a percentage of the loan proceeds, Thompson allegedly helped Baisden, Crosby, Maloney, Smith, and Wilson to obtain a $300,000 PPP loan by submitting loan applications that contained numerous false and misleading statements about their businesses. For example, each of the loan applications claimed to have 16 employees and monthly wages of $120,000. Additionally, identical fraudulent quarterly tax returns were submitted in connection with each loan application. The indictment alleges that the defendants used the PPP loan funds for impermissible purposes.
The group fraudulently obtained approximately $3 million in PPP loans. To date, authorities have recovered approximately $1,195,784.98, of the stolen money. Six were charged in an indictment filed in the Northern District of Georgia with conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, false statements to a financial institution, and money laundering. They are:
- Rodericque Thompson, 43, of Atlanta, Georgia,
- Micah K. Baisden, 30, of Doraville, Georgia,
- Travis C. Crosby, 31, of Wellford, South Carolina,
- Keith A. Maloney, Jr., 33, of Port Wentworth, Georgia,
- Tabronx W. Smith, 43, of Buford, Georgia,
- Thomas D. Wilson, 30, of Atlanta, Georgia.
The following five individuals have pleaded guilty in connection with this alleged scheme:READ MORE: Georgia Woman Sentenced To Federal Prison For Importing Illegal Drugs Hidden In Stone Blocks
- Antonio D. Hosey, 38, of Atlanta, Georgia, pleaded guilty to a one-count information charging conspiracy to commit wire fraud and money laundering
- Timothy Williams, 30, of Atlanta, Georgia, pleaded guilty to a two-count information charging conspiracy to commit wire fraud and making false statements
- Stanley Dorceus, 34, of Marietta, Georgia, pleaded guilty to a two-count information charging conspiracy to commit wire fraud and making false statements
- Kenneth L. Wright, Jr., 33, of Atlanta, Georgia, pleaded guilty to a two-count information charging conspiracy to commit wire fraud and making false statements
- Mark A. Stewart, 54, of Greenville, South Carolina, pleaded guilty to a two-count information charging conspiracy to commit wire fraud and making false statements
An indictment is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
ALSO TRENDING ON CBS LOCAL:Carr Warns Tech Support Scams Are On The Rise