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St. Louis Man Admits $150,000 Pandemic Fraud

November 06, 2023

From the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Missouri

ST. LOUIS – A man from St. Louis, Missouri on Monday admitted fraudulently obtaining a $150,000 loan during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Demetrice Black, 53, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to one felony count of misuse of a Social Security number and one felony count of theft of government property. As part of his plea, he admitted applying for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration on July 24, 2020 using a Social Security number that was not his own and a fraudulent Missouri driver’s license. Black, who was acting with another person, transferred some of the money to a separate checking account and withdrew some of the money in cash.

The EIDL loans were intended to help business owners who had been negatively affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Black is scheduled to be sentenced February 8, 2024. The charge of misusing a Social Security number is punishable by up to five years in prison and the theft charge is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Both also carry a potential fine of up to $250,000.

The case was investigated by the Social Security Administration Office of Inspector General. Assistant U.S. Attorney Diane Klocke is prosecuting the case.

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