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Senior Director of Strategic Alliances
LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Davon Hunter did not steal one single identity to commit a half a million-dollar COVID-19 pandemic aid scheme. He didn’t have to. Hunter just used Instagram and word of mouth to recruit potential co-conspirators who would give him their personal identifying information. Who said social media friends aren’t real friends?

Hunter submitted at least twenty-three fraudulent Paycheck Protection Program loan applications to at least four financial institutions for businesses he claimed belonged to himself and sixteen other co-conspirators. Hunter successfully obtained more than $500,000 in PPP loans. In exchange for preparing the applications and supplying the supporting documentation, Hunter demanded that the co-conspirators pay him between 25 and 50 percent of the loan received. Friendship with fraudsters is going to cost you!

COVID-19 started to wind down and so didn’t the relief aid. But that didn’t stop Hunter. He just diversified. Same strategy, different target. Hunter schemed to defraud financial institutions by depositing fraudulent altered stolen checks from small businesses. Hunter stole legitimate checks from various businesses and then altered them to make them payable to accounts controlled by his social media friends. At least sixteen altered checks, worth more than $150,000, were deposited. Hunter would grab the funds before the banks could determine that the checks were worthless.

Hunter used the money he obtained on a variety of purchases, including a Range Rover, expensive jewelry, gambling, tickets to professional sporting events, trips across the country, and luxury items from high-end producers such as Dior, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and others. How does a guy who used social media as a tool to commit fraud show off? On social media of course.

Great job by the COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force.

Today’s Fraud of The Day is based on article “$500K in PPP fraud and ‘card-cracking’ scheme gets Richmond man 7 years in prison” published by the Richmond-Times Dispatch on March 5, 2024

A Richmond man on Thursday was sentenced to 7 years in prison for his role in orchestrating schemes to defraud a COVID-19 pandemic relief program and steal funds from small businesses via altered checks that had been taken from the mail.

According to an indictment filed in July, Davon Hunter, 26, of Richmond, and unidentified co-conspirators fraudulently obtained over $500,000 in funds from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a temporary relief program that offered small businesses forgivable loans to cover payroll, rents and mortgages, debt payments, utility bills and other expenses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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