FDLE arrests four in COVID loan fraud scheme

For Immediate Release
June 8, 2023
MIAMI – Agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) arrested Steeve Roberts, 39, of Coral Springs, Johnnie Jean, 42, of Coral Springs, Amanda Pierre-Philippe, 21, of Miami, and Stephanie Paul, 26, of Miami, for their involvement in a COVID loan fraud scheme. Roberts and Jean face one count each of organized scheme to defraud, conspiracy to commit organized scheme to defraud, money laundering, and conspiracy to commit money laundering charges. Pierre-Philippe and Paul face one count each of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
The investigation began in March of 2021, when Attorney General Ashley Moody’s Office of Statewide Prosecution discovered Roberts was using funds that he obtained from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act as a source of personal income.
Investigators learned that Roberts fraudulently applied for Payroll Protection Plan (PPP) loan and an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). Roberts also created a shell corporation based out of North Miami Beach, claiming to be in the business services sector.
The deception about the business’ activity, profits and losses, and number of employees allowed Roberts to receive more than $500,000 in federal COVID relief funds. Instead of using the funds for his business, Roberts used the money as a down payment to purchase a Coral Springs home, purchase luxury goods, and posting bond for a jailed acquaintance.
The investigation revealed several family members were involved in the scheme, including Jean, Roberts’ wife, as well as Pierre-Philippe and Paul, Roberts’ nieces.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “These criminals stole more than half a million dollars by filing fraudulent loan applications to COVID relief programs.  Money intended to help keep jobs during the pandemic were instead used for their own personal purchases. I am grateful for the strong investigative work by our law enforcement partners working with my statewide prosecutors in this case.”
Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Mark Glass said, “Criminals like this, who think they can commit gross fraud without being caught, and at the expense of law-abiding citizens who honestly relied upon this financial assistance, will not go unpunished. I commend the tremendous work conducted by FDLE’s agents and analysts, as well as by Attorney General Ashley Moody’s prosecutors.”
Roberts and Jean were arrested on June 6 and booked into the Broward County Jail, each ordered held on a $1,000,000 bond. Pierre-Philippe and Paul were arrested June 7 and booked into the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center, each ordered held on a $10,000 bond. The case will be prosecuted by Attorney General Ashley Moody’s Office of Statewide Prosecution.
For Further Information Contact:
FDLE Office of Public Information
(850) 410-7001

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