A 47-year-old Houston man, Scott Jackson Davis, has been sentenced to 102 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release for a $3 million PPP loan fraud scheme. U.S. District Judge David Hittner also ordered Davis to pay restitution of $3,002,655.13. The case highlights the importance of vigilance and due diligence among small business owners when applying for financial assistance programs.
In 2020, Davis fraudulently received $3.3 million in PPP funds through three fraudulent loan applications submitted to multiple financial institutions. He fabricated ownership of three businesses – Skilled Trade Investments LP, Skilled Trade Staffing LLC, and Skilled Trade Investments Group – claiming they had numerous employees and significant payroll. In reality, the businesses had few, if any, employees and little to no payroll. Davis used forged IRS documentation to support the inflated business expenses.
Davis also lied on the PPP applications, stating that he had never been convicted of a felony. However, he was a prior felon on supervised release for an unrelated 2017 wire fraud conviction. Davis spent a large portion of the fraudulently acquired PPP loan funds on private jet travel, real estate, jewelry, guns, and luxury vehicles.
This case serves as a reminder for small business owners to be cautious when applying for financial assistance programs and to ensure that the information provided in their applications is accurate and truthful. It is crucial for businesses to conduct proper due diligence and to be aware of potential fraud schemes that could impact their financial well-being and reputation.
The FBI and Small Business Administration – Office of Inspector General conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney John Wakefield and Trial Attorney Edward Emokpae of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section prosecuted the case.
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