Atlanta reality star accused of using COVID-19 relief loan to buy jewelry and gifts for himself – WSB-TV Channel 2
ATLANTA – A Love & Hip Hop: An Atlanta cast member has been arrested for federal bank fraud in connection with a loan he obtained during the coronavirus pandemic that was supposed to help his employees.
Maurice Fayne, alias “Arkansas Mo”, 37, of Dacula, was in court on Wednesday.
Prosecutors say he stole money loaned from a Paycheck Protection Program (P3) to help hard-hit employees and businesses and used it to buy jewelry and d ‘other personal items.
“The defendant allegedly took advantage of the Paycheck Protection Program’s emergency loan provisions which were intended to help employees and small businesses battered by the coronavirus,” said US Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak, of the northern district of Georgia. “We will investigate and charge anyone who inappropriately misappropriates these vital funds for their own personal benefit.”
Fayne is the sole owner of a Georgian company called Flame Trucking. According to documents, he applied for a loan of $ 3.74 million which he said would be used to retain workers, maintain payroll and make mortgage and utility payments.
The bank eventually granted him a Payday Loan Consolidation of more than $ 2 million.
“Within days, Fayne reportedly used more than $ 1.5 million of the PPP loan amount to buy $ 85,000 worth of 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, ”prosecutors mentioned. “These payments do not constitute an authorized use of PPP funds under the CARES Act.”
Fayne has denied using the P3 money to buy things for himself.
Federal agents searched his property on Monday and seized $ 80,000 in cash and jewelry he had purchased. Officers also found a Rolls-Royce Wraith in the driveway that still had temporary dealer tags on it.
The CARES Act is a federal law enacted on March 29 and is designed to provide emergency financial assistance to the millions of Americans who are suffering the economic effects caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The FBI is investigating the case.