A reality television personality has been arrested on charges of committing bank fraud in order to obtain funds through the Paycheck Protection Program.
The Department of Justice announced that Maurice Fayne, aka Arkansas Mo, 37, of Dacula, Georgia, was arrested on charges of bank fraud. Fayne appeared before a federal judge on Wednesday.
Fayne is a cast member of “Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta.”
The Paycheck Protection Program was implemented to assist small businesses make payroll during the spread of the coronavirus, as many companies had to scale back operations to help mitigate the spread of the virus.
Fayne allegedly applied for a loan under the name Flame Trucking, stating that the business had 107 employees and an average monthly payroll of $1,490,200. The DOJ said that Fayne applied for a $3,725,500 loan that 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.”
United Community Bank provided Fayne with more than $2 million following his applications. Within days, Fayne allegedly spent 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 for child support.
“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.”