A Florida rapper has been accused of using $1 million in Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loans to buy a Ferrari and other expensive items.
Diamond Blue Smith was charged with wire fraud, bank fraud, and conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud Tuesday in the Southern District of Florida, according to the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida.
Florida Recording Artist and Pennsylvania Man Charged for Role in $24 Million COVID-Relief Fraud Scheme https://t.co/do0TbGerQt
— Justice Department (@TheJusticeDept) October 6, 2020
The complaint accused Smith and Tonye C. Johnson of getting millions of dollars through PPP loans fraudulently. (RELATED: ‘Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta’ Star Used $2 Million PPP Loan To Buy Diamond Jewelry And Rolex, Feds Claim)
“Smith, a recording artist, is alleged to have obtained a PPP loan of $426,717 for his company, Throwbackjersey.com LLC, using falsified documents,” the press release said. “Upon completion of that loan, Smith then sought and obtained another PPP loan of $708,065 for his other company, Blue Star Records LLC, using falsified documents. Smith allegedly purchased a Ferrari for $96,000 and made other luxury purchases using PPP loan proceeds.”
The Ferrari was reportedly seized when Smith was arrested.
“Johnson is alleged to have obtained a PPP loan of $389,627 for his own company, Synergy Towing & Transport LLC, using falsified documents,” according to the press release. “The complaint alleges that Johnson then paid a portion of the loan proceeds to co-conspirators in the scheme.”
As previously reported, the PPP was launched on April 3 as part of the $2.2 trillion CARES Act. The program was designed to give loans to small businesses to help lessen the economic burden caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The funds reportedly ran out after less than two weeks.
Smith is known for his role in the show “Love & Hip Hop: Miami.”