Phoenix woman sentenced to 5 years in prison for PPP loan fraud

Phoenix (3TV/CBS 5) – A Phoenix woman was sentenced to five years in prison and ordered to return it after committing paycheck protection loan fraud.

Celestine Coretta Strong, 46, was sentenced to prison on Monday, ordered to pay $327,448 in damages and ordered to surrender her 2016 Mercedes-Benz E400 and 2018 Dodge Challenger. Strong also pleaded guilty to his one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. She had applied for and received a loan from the CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program while actively falsifying her employee information, wage information and bank statements during the COVID-19 pandemic. In total, Strong held 17 different loans worth over $3.5 million for her.

Of those loans, Strong retained about $400,000 and purchased various luxury items, including a car that he was eventually forced to abandon. Established the COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force to manage DOJ resources that may be The task force handles investigations, prosecutions, and redress programs to prevent fraud.

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