COVID relief funds used in fraud of North Plainfield NJ woman, feds say

NEWARK – A North Plainfield woman has been charged with fraudulently obtaining more than $1 million in federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and Economic Disaster Loans (EIDLs) that she reportedly used for personal expenses, including a BMW.

Nivah Garcis, 51, has been charged with one count of bank fraud and one count of money laundering, US Attorney Philip R. Sellinger said.

Garcis made her first court appearance via videolink on Monday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Edward S. Kiel and was released on an unsecured bond of $100,000.

According to court documents and statements, Garcis allegedly submitted two fraudulent PPP loan applications to a lender on behalf of two alleged businesses and three fraudulent EIDL loan applications to the Small Business Administration (SBA) on behalf of three other businesses.

Following:North Plainfield man defrauded $860,000 in COVID relief loans, feds say

The applications Garcis submitted each contained fraudulent statements to the lender — a member of the Federal Home Loan Bank — and the SBA, including false federal tax documents allegedly from the IRS.

Garcis also allegedly fabricated the existence of employees and salaries paid through the alleged companies.

According to IRS records, however, none of the purported tax documents Garcis submitted in support of his loan applications were ever filed with the IRS, the U.S. attorney’s office said.

Based on Garcis’ alleged misrepresentations, his fake business loan applications were approved for approximately $1.05 million in federal COVID-19 emergency relief funds for struggling small businesses. She used the proceeds for various personal expenses, including a BMW SUV, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.

If convicted, the bank fraud count faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine. The money laundering count faces a potential maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.

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