By 2022, Ian Ishmel Bonas was already identified by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms as someone to watch. At that point, Bonas had been caught purchasing firearms, both new and stolen. And buying cocaine, maybe for himself but definitely to resell. Bonas was known as a prolific distributor of crack cocaine in Norfolk and Virginia Beach. Lucky for us the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms was doing their job. Because if they hadn’t, who knows if anyone would have found that Bonas was fraudulently receiving COVID-19 Paycheck Protection Program funds.
While building a case against Bonas, ATF agents discovered during the investigation of bank records that Bonas received four Small Business Administration-guaranteed PPP loans of $20,833 each. Bonas also obtained forgiveness for the $83,330 in loans using the same fraudulent data he used in his application. Who knows what the business was that he listed. Lock, Stock, and Drugs? Shot and Smoke Depot? I He probably didn’t need to lie. It seems like anyone could have gotten a forgivable loan from the government during the pandemic.
A federal judge convicted Ian Ishmel Bonas of Norfolk on Wednesday on charges involving the sale of cocaine and firearms, distribution of cocaine, use of a firearm during narcotics trafficking, being a felon while possessing a firearm, and fraudulently receiving $83,330 in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans.
He faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years, and a maximum penalty of life in prison and is scheduled for sentencing on Jan. 16, 2024.
Great investigative work, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms agents.
Today’s Fraud of The Day is based on article “Norfolk man illegally sold firearms, cocaine, received over $80,000 in fraudulent loans”published by WAVY on September 14, 2023
A Norfolk man was convicted Wednesday, Sept. 13, on charges involving firearms, cocaine and loan fraud.
38-year-old Ian Ishmel Bonas was convicted for sale of cocaine and firearms, distribution of cocaine, use of a firearm in the commission of narcotics trafficking, being a felon in possession of a firearm and fraudulently receiving
Between 2021 and 2022, Bonas was apprehended by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, or ATF, agents after being in a scheme involving a group of co-conspirators who distributed around one kilogram of cocaine and 15 firearms, according to court documents.