The four submitted more than 400 applications between April 2020 and June 2020 but only received more than $745,000 in loan proceeds.
Sharika L. Carpenter, of Memphis, Tenn., who owned the Memphis-based Better Days Tax Services, in Memphis, received four years in prison and must pay restitution of $38,756 and a fine of $20,000. She also cannot run or work for a tax preparation business. Carpenter pleaded guilty on January 13 to one count of conspiracy to defraud the EIDL program, one count of wire fraud, two counts of theft of government property, and one count of preparing a false tax return.
Carpenter recruited at least five individuals in her scheme via which they obtained more than $745,000 in fraudulent EIDL funds, charging clients up to 50 percent of the proceeds and paying her employees a flat fee for each submission. She also submitted a fraudulent PPP loan in her own name, obtaining $3,548, and claimed more than $33,000 in employment assistance payments, to which she was not entitled.
Her co-defendants, all of Memphis, all pleaded guilty in January.
Kevin Maclin was sentenced to 18 months in prison and must pay restitution of $31,000 and a fine of $10,000. Maclin recruited clients for Better Days while Carpenter prepared an EDL application in his name, and he received $31,000 to which he was not entitled. He received a percentage of the EIDL funds clients received. Maclin pleaded guilty on January 18 to one count of conspiracy to defraud the EIDL program
Co-defendants Brandy D. Scaife and Stephanie Johnson each pled guilty on January 12 to one count of conspiracy to defraud the EIDL program for their roles in the fraud scheme.
The two, who worked for Better Days, received a flat fee for each application that received funding and Scaife obtained a fraudulent EILD loan in her own name. She received time served and must pay $17,900 in restitution. Johnson received two years of federal probation.