The Justice Department has charged LaDonna Wiggins, 37, with bank fraud, false statements to a bank and money laundering.
LaDonna Wiggins, 37, now faces up to 30 years in federal prison after allegedly using #CARESAct funds for lavish personal purchases.
Court documents say she bought 2 homes, built a swimming pool, spent over $ 36,000 at Amazon, around $ 5,000 at Helzberg Diamonds and the list goes on: pic.twitter.com/y03Z4KGhgY
– Mayra Moreno ABC13 (@ MayraABC13) March 3, 2021
According to a statement on Tuesday, Wiggins submitted two Paycheck Protection Program (P3) loan applications and received more than $ 3.6 million. The charges allege that Wiggins used the money for personal purchases, including two homes, several vehicles and luxury goods.
The Justice Department lists some of the purchases at nearly $ 725,000 for homes at Katy and Cypress, $ 78,000 for a 2020 Land Rover and a $ 63,000 purchase from Chanel.
RELATED: Texas Leads The Country In CARES Law Fraud
Other purchases listed by officials include $ 46,000 from Neiman Marcus and $ 14,000 from Apple.
Wiggins appeared before a US magistrate on Tuesday.
His lawyer released a statement on Wednesday proclaiming his innocence. He said, in part: “We are very disappointed to learn that the government has decided to lay criminal charges against our client, LaDonna Wiggins, after our repeated requests to sit down and discuss this matter with them. Ms Wiggins is innocent of the charges against her in a nine-count indictment, as well as any allegations of wrongdoing the government has made against her. Contrary to their claims, Ms. Wiggins is a very successful young African American businesswoman who has cultivated several successful local businesses and is a distinguished member and asset to the Houston community.. “
The attorney’s statement went on to say that they would take the case to a jury.
If convicted, Wiggins faces up to 30 years in federal prison and a possible fine of up to $ 1 million.
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SEE ALSO: Man accused of stealing $ 1.6 million in CARES law money to buy cars and take trips
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