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A member of the New York Jets on Thursday was arrested and charged for his alleged involvement in fraudulently obtaining Paycheck Protection Program loans, according to federal authorities.
Joshua Bellamy, 31, of St. Petersburg, Florida, was charged in a federal criminal complaint filed in the Southern District of Florida with wire fraud, bank fraud, and conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, according to the U.S. Dept. of Justice. Bellamy is due for his first court appearance Thursday afternoon.
Bellamy and nine others are accused of filing fraudulent loan applications seeking more than $24 million in forgivable Paycheck Protection Program loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
The programs are meant to assist employees and small businesses battered by the coronavirus pandemic. There have been a number of high-profile cases involving alleged fraud.
The Thursday complaint alleges that the scheme involved the preparation of at least 90 fraudulent applications, most of which were submitted worth more than $24 million dollars. Numerous applications were approved and funded, paying out at least $17.4 million, according to the DOJ.
Bellamy is alleged to have obtained a PPP loan of $1,246,565 for his own company, Drip Entertainment LLC, according to authorities. With those funds, he is accused of purchasing more than $104,000 in luxury goods, including purchases at Dior, Gucci, and jewelers. He is also alleged to have spent approximately $62,774 in PPP loan proceeds at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, and to have withdrawn over $302,000, according to authorities.
Bellamy, a wide receiver, has been in the NFL since 2012 when he signed with the Kansas City Chiefs as an undrafted free agent. He has played on a number of different teams during his career, most recently the Jets. The team has yet to issue a statement on the arrest. The NFL season officially begins Thursday night, but the Jets do not play until Sunday.
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