(The Center Square) – A St. Louis man admitted to fraudulently obtaining a $150,000 federal loan from the federal Small Business Administration during the pandemic.
Demetrice Black pleaded guilty to one felony count of misusing a Social Security number and one felony count of theft of government property. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 8, 2024.
Misusing a Social Security number is punishable by up to five years in prison. The charge of theft of government property is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Both charges could include fines of up to $250,000.
The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans program was created to help businesses during the economic shutdowns during the pandemic.
On July 24, 2020, Black, 53, used a Social Security number that wasn’t his and a fraudulent Missouri driver’s license to apply for and obtain the loan, according to information provided by the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri.
Black acted with another person in the scheme. He transferred some of the loan to a separate checking account and withdrew some of the money in cash.