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Man gets COVID relief loans, spends on Tesla shares: feds

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A 51-year-old man was sentenced to four years in prison on wire fraud, bank fraud and money laundering charges on Jan. 6, 2022, federal prosecutors said. He is accused of fraudulently receiving COVID-19 pandemic relief loans in 2020.

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An Oregon man was sentenced to prison after he was accused of stealing millions in COVID-19 relief loans and spending it on Tesla shares and 25 properties, federal officials said.

Andrew Aaron Lloyd, 51, of Lebanon, Oregon, was sentenced to four years in prison on wire fraud, bank fraud and money laundering charges on Jan. 6, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Oregon said in a news release.

In a span of 60 days in 2020, Lloyd applied for more than a dozen COVID-19 pandemic relief loans meant for struggling businesses, court documents show.

He received over $3.5 million after applying to the Paycheck Protection Program and the Economic Injury Disaster Loans Program with bogus applications, sentencing documents show.

The seized cash and securities from Lloyd’s account now are worth more than $18 million, the news release states.

Prosecutors said in the sentencing documents that he used the money to buy 25 properties in Oregon and California, and he purchased securities through his brokerage account.

He bought more than 15,000 shares in Tesla, which increased “exponentially,” prosecutors said.

On the applications, he included different businesses under the names of family members and business associates, sentencing documents show. He also submitted IRS forms with fake wages, earnings and the names of 56 to 64 employees who didn’t exist within those companies.

In addition to four years in prison, Lloyd was ordered to pay more than $4 million in restitution and serve five years of supervised release.

An accomplice in the scheme was also charged. Russell Anthony Schort, 39, of Myrtle Creek, Oregon, pleaded guilty to bank fraud on Nov. 16, the news release states.

Helena Wegner is a McClatchy National Real-Time Reporter covering the state of Washington and the western region. She’s a journalism graduate from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. She’s based in Phoenix.




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