This Little Piggy Goes to Prison

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A Little Rock Arkansas woman was sentenced in March 2021 to 41 months in prison for COVID-19 fraud. In April 2020, Ganell Tubbs applied for a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan, claiming that her company, Suga Girl Customs, paid nearly $1.4 in compensation during the first quarter of 2020. She received a PPP loan of more than $1.5 million.

In May 2020, Tubbs applied for a PPP loan for The Little Piglet Soap Company (well, there’s a prescient business name) and received more than $414,000. She claimed that 210 employees were on the Suga Girl Customs payroll, and another 36 were employed by the Little Piglet Soap Company. She claimed to be running both businesses out of her home. (Must have been a bit crowded in there!) Both business licenses had been revoked at the time of the loans. (No surprise!)

Meanwhile, Tubbs spent loan funds to make a $8,000 student loan payment. (Does the school offer a major in fraud?) She also enjoyed a $6,000 online shopping spree and wired $150,000 to a relative.

Tubbs was charged in July 2020 with two counts of bank fraud, two counts of making false statements on a loan application, and one count of engaging in a monetary transaction with proceeds of unlawful activity. She faced up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine if convicted of all charges.

Tubbs pleaded guilty to one count of bank fraud in December 2020. In addition to the prison sentence, she was ordered to pay $14,000 in restitution. Fortunately, authorities had already recovered the rest of the nearly $2 million in fraudulent loan funds.

Today’s Fraud of the Day comes from a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Arkansas, “Little Rock Woman Sentenced to 41 Months in Prison for COVID Relief Fraud,” dated March 12, 2021.

LITTLE ROCK—A Little Rock woman was sentenced to 41 months in federal prison after fraudulently obtaining nearly $2 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans intended to provide relief for small businesses affected by COVID-19. Jonathan D. Ross, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, and Diane Upchurch, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Little Rock Field Office, announced the sentence of Ganell Tubbs, 41.

Tubbs pleaded guilty to bank fraud in December 2020 and admitted that she purported to own two businesses: The Little Piglet Soap Company, LLC, and Suga Girl Customs, LLC. According to the Arkansas Secretary of State, neither business is in good standing, and both businesses list Tubbs’ residence and personal phone number as the business contact information.

Additional information comes from an Arkansas Democrat Gazette article, “Business loan bogus, Little Rock woman tells court,” dated December 11, 2020.

 

 

 

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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.