ATLANTA (Fox 5 Atlanta) - An Atlanta reality TV star was sentenced on multiple federal charges including bank fraud and conspiracy for his part in fraudulently obtaining a Paycheck Protection Program loan and for running a Ponzi scheme from his towing business.
"Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta" star Maurice Fayne was sentenced to 17 years in federal prison. Fayne, who is the sole owner of Flame Trucking in Georgia, applied for a PPP loan through United Community Bank back in April 2020 asking for more than $3.7 million. The 38-year-old, who also goes by Arkansas Mo, ended up receiving a little more than $2 million and prosecutors said he ended up using the money for personal items.
"Fayne planned to use the PPP program as a cover for his long-running Ponzi scheme," said Acting U.S. Attorney Kurt R. Erskine. "The funds the program supplies serve as a lifeline to many businesses desperately trying to stay afloat during the pandemic, and unfortunately his fraud helped deplete those precious dollars."
Prosecutors said more than $1.5 million of the loan proceeds went towards the purchase of $85,000 in jewelry, including a Rolex Presidential watch, a diamond bracelet, and a 5.73-carat diamond ring for himself, to lease a 2019 Rolls Royce Wraith, to make loan payments, and to pay $40,000 for child support.
"This sentence should serve notice that the FBI and our federal partners will investigate anyone who misdirects federal emergency assistance earmarked for businesses who need it to stay afloat," said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. "We won’t tolerate anyone driven by personal greed to pocket American taxpayer money that should be going to those who need it."
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