Missouri woman sentenced to a year in prison, must repay $101,000 for pandemic loan fraud

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A woman from Missouri was sentenced to a year in prison for fraudulently obtaining two pandemic-era loans totaling more than $101,000.

U.S. District Judge Ronnie L. White also ordered Lakenya M. Hobbs, 40, of Florissant, to repay $101,567 to the Small Business Administration. 

Hobbs defrauded the Paycheck Protection Program, which provided forgivable loans to small businesses to help them save jobs during the pandemic. On March 12, 2021, she submitted a loan application containing false and fraudulent information that resulted in the issuance of an $81,223 loan. Hobbs did not use the money to save jobs but instead at electronic stores and restaurants and for airfare. She also took some out in cash. On Oct. 1, 2021, she successfully applied for loan forgiveness, falsely claiming she’d used the PPP money for payroll. 

On May 27, 2021, Hobbs submitted a fraudulent loan application to a different banking institution and received a $20,344 loan. She was also granted forgiveness for this loan.

Hobbs pleaded guilty in November to one count of bank fraud and one count of wire fraud.

The case was investigated by the FBI.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Clow is prosecuting the case.

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