Five current or former employees of the Internal Revenue Service defrauded the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program of hundreds of thousands of dollars in relief funds meant for those economically devastated by COVID-19, the Department of Justice said Tuesday.
The IRS employees, who live in Tennessee and Mississippi, used the funds for trips to Las Vegas, as well as to buy Gucci, other luxury fashion items, a Mercedes-Benz, and an investment account, DOJ charged. All told, they sought to illegally collect more than $1 million from PPP and EIDL, and one of the accused also fraudulently sought unemployment benefits.
“The IRS employees charged in these cases allegedly abused the trust placed in them by the public,” said Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite, Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
Director of COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Kevin Chambers added: “This matter demonstrates the brazenness with which bad actors have taken advantage of federal programs meant to help those who suffered most from the COVID-19 pandemic.” full storyFollow Elite Feed!