(The Center Square) – A Missouri woman was indicted in federal court and accused of fraudulently seeking and receiving $104,000 in federal assistance loans issued during the pandemic.
Indictments unsealed today found Camille N. Foster of St. Louis County charged with three counts of bank fraud and two counts of wire fraud involving the Paycheck Protection Program.
Foster devised a scheme to defraud lenders participating in the Paycheck Protection Program from May 2020 to February 2021. She allegedly submitted fraudulent loan applications for three companies: Humble Hearts Home Healthcare LLC, Embellished Jewels LLC and Muse Me Boutique LLC.
The applications contained false information about company payrolls, profits and the purpose for the loans, according to the indictment. Foster also allegedly made a false claim that she didn’t own or have common management with any other business.
Humble Hearts received two $20,832 loans, Embellished Jewels received two $20,833 loans and Muse Me Boutique received one $20,833 loan.
Foster later sought forgiveness of the loans, falsely claiming that a portion of each loan had been used for payroll expenses, according to the indictment. Instead, Foster transferred the federal loan money to her other accounts, took some money out in cash, transferred some funds to other people and spent some on cosmetic surgery and retail and restaurant purchases, according to the indictment.
Foster could face up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine, or both, if found guilty of bank fraud. She could face up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, or both, if convicted of wire fraud.
The case was investigated by the FBI and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Clow.