SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Former Olympic speed skater Allison Marie Baver has been accused of defrauding the government of millions of dollars in Paycheck Protection Program loans.
The Utah District Attorney’s Office said the 41-year-old had secured a total of $ 10 million in loans obtained through Small Business’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Administration. Baver has been charged with eight federal counts of making a false statement to a bank and one count of money laundering.
Baver is accused of making false statements about loan applications for a company she owns, Allison Baver Entertainment, LLC, according to court documents. During the period April 13, 2020 to April 26, 2020, officials said Baver submitted eight different loan applications to Northeast Bank and Meridian Bank. In each request, Baver reportedly requested $ 10 million in PPP loan financing.
Court documents indicate that Baver claimed that his company’s monthly payroll averaged between $ 4,000,000 and $ 4,769,583 for 100-430 employees when in reality Allison Baver Entertainment had no employees and no average monthly payroll. Baver was able to secure $ 10 million in funding, which prosecutors say transferred to a separate bank account and used part of it to invest in the production of a film.
Best known as an Olympic speed skater, Baver won a bronze medal at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics in the women’s 3,000m relay after competing in the 2002 and 2006 Olympics.
As the COVID-19 pandemic struck, the increase in PPP loan fraud increased exponentially, according to the US Department of Justice. Fraud cases have grown so numerous that in May 2021 the Attorney General established the COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force to tackle pandemic-related fraud.
Former NFL wide receiver Joshua Bellamy was recently sentenced to more than three years in prison for fraudulently receiving a $ 1.2 million PPP loan for his company, “Drip Entertainment” and spending the funds on luxury goods and in a casino.
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