This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(KIAH) — A Houston man has been charged as the leader of a national fraud scheme to acquire $2 million in federal small business loans from the CARES Act.

Jacob Liticker, 25, was charged by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Columbia, S.C., along with three other individuals, including a member of the U.S. Air Force.

The indictment claims that Licticker, aka “Jay Stunna,” led a national scheme that tried to acquire $2 million in loans from the Paycheck Protection Program and did get nearly $1 million in PPP loans.

The PPP loan program was administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA) and provided forgivable loans to small businesses for job retention and certain other expenses.

According to the indictment, Liticker created false PPP loan applications for nearly 100 people across the country, typically for amounts around $20,000, and would assist those individuals in submitting this false information to SBA-approved lenders. In doing so, he would often create false tax documentation to support the non-existent businesses.

In exchange for his services, Liticker would receive a portion of the PPP loan proceeds. The indictment alleges that Liticker would also assist in getting the loans forgiven.

“PPP loans were finite funds designed to help businesses stay afloat amid unprecedented times and extraordinary challenges. Every dollar wrongly taken from this taxpayer-funded program was a dollar that could not go to a legitimate business in need,” said U.S. Attorney Adair F. Boroughs. “This Office takes pandemic-related crime seriously and stands ready prosecute fraud related to the Coronavirus in all its forms. This case highlights those efforts.”

The other three men charged are:

Kehinde Mubarak Ladepo, 26, an enlisted member of the United States Air Force stationed at Shaw Air Force Base in Sumter;

Ganiyu Victor Ladepo, a/k/a “Victor,” 29, from Fayetteville, North Carolina; and

and Maxwell Uzoma Okobi, a/k/a “Maxi,” 24, a resident of North Carolina currently deployed to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait.

All four men face a maximum penalty of imprisonment of up to 20 years, fines, and restitution.