Phoenix lady convicted of PPP fraud, sentenced to jail

Celestine Coletta Robust, 46, was not too long ago sentenced to 5 years in jail after admitting to fraudulently acquiring loans from the Paycheck Safety Program.

PHOENIX — A Phoenix lady has been sentenced to jail and ordered to pay greater than $300,000 in restitution after she was convicted of fraudulently acquiring loans from the federal government’s Paycheck Safety Program. 

Celestine Coletta Robust, 46, was sentenced final week to spend 5 years in jail after she pleaded responsible to at least one rely of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in line with the U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace of Arizona. 

Prosecutors say Robust had obtained loans by way of the CARES Act Paycheck Safety Program, which was launched through the pandemic to help companies affected by the financial downturn.  

The defendant conspired with others to use for PPP loans with falsified paperwork and ended up receiving about $400,000. 

On Could 1, 2020, Robust’s checking account was overdrawn by about $18, courtroom information present. That very same day, over $279,000 in PPP funds have been wired into Robust’s account.

Inside a couple of days, Robust had withdrawn 1000’s of {dollars} from her account to buy a Mercedes Benz in Gilbert, information present. 

Robust’s “methodical” scheme resulted in substantial losses to the taxpayers, prosecutors say. 

“Robust used the cash to finance a lavish life-style that included the acquisition of a luxurious car, paying off the stability of her son’s car, amongst different issues,” courtroom information state. “She additionally concerned others by submitting, in whole, 17 false mortgage purposes for others that have been in the end rejected.”

U.S. Choose Susan M. Brnovich ordered Robust to pay $327,448 in restitution, in addition to give up her 2016 Mercedes-Benz E400 and 2018 Dodge Challenger. 

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