Last edited on Friday, January 28, 2022, at 4:50 PM.
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Friday, January 28, 2022
New York Man Arrested, Charged in COVID-19 Relief Fraud Scheme
A New York Man was arrested Jan. 26 on charges arising from a scheme to fraudulently obtain business loans and unemployment pandemic relief funds made available under the CARES Act. Ronald Buie, 35, was charged with one count of wire fraud. Buie made his initial appearance in federal court in the Eastern District of New York that same day, and he will appear in Boston later, on a date yet to be determined.
According to the charging documents in this case, Buie engaged in a scheme to defraud the SBA. The charging documents allege that Buie applied for SBA loans under various false identities, for which he had also opened bank and email accounts. Buie also allegedly submitted fraudulent documentation to apply for and obtain a fraudulent loan from the SBA Paycheck Protection Program for his company, Platinum Car Service LLC.
Specifically, in support of his loan application, Buie allegedly provided what he purported to be a monthly bank statement for his business checking account showing an ending balance of more than $198,000, whereas bank records for that particular month show that the actual balance was less than $3,000. In addition, it is alleged that Buie’s scheme also involved the utilization of various false identities to apply for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance benefits.
New York Man is Fifth to Plead Guilty in Multi-Million Dollar Fraudulent Prize Notice Scheme
On Jan. 26, a fifth defendant pled guilty in the Eastern District of New York to participating in a fraudulent, multi-million-dollar mass-mailing scheme that tricked consumers into paying fees for falsely promised cash prizes. According to court documents, from November 2013 through November 2018, Carmine Maietta, 75, of Westbury, New York, engaged in a direct-mail scheme that sent fraudulent prize notification mailings to thousands of consumers.
The mailings induced consumers to pay a fee, purportedly to possibly win a large cash prize. None of the consumers who sent a fee ever received such a prize.
Maietta pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud. Previously, four other defendants pled guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud for participating in the very same scheme. All four previous defendants were part of the same multi-million-dollar mail fraud scheme in which they worked together to coordinate the mailings, open and process victims’ responses to the fraudulent solicitations, manage lists of recipients and respondents, and process victim payments.