Atlanta prosecutor jailed for 7 years after stealing $15 million through PPP loans

The Daily Mail reported that the former assistant city attorney of Atlanta, who also had a life advice podcast, has been sentenced to jail for seven years for obtaining approximately $15 million in COVID relief loans.

Shelitha Robertson, 62, used the illegally acquired funds to purchase a 10 carat diamond ring, a Rolls Royce, and a motorbike, according to the report. She obtained the immense amount of money through the Paycheck Protection Program, which was a stimulus program set up to help struggling businesses during the pandemic.

‘I choose integrity and whatever else it brings. I don’t choose selling your soul to the devil.’

Just weeks before Robertson was jailed, she appeared on her daughter’s “Mommy & Me” podcast to talk about how important it is to work hard with “integrity,” per the report.

However, it does not appear Robertson took her own advice. She made her money through deception, submitting one false loan application after another during the COVID era, claiming she needed funds to support the four businesses she owned.

A second report said Robertson even transferred some of the funds to family members and her co-conspirator, Chandra Norton.

“Motivated by greed, Robertson deceptively obtained funds that were designated to provide emergency financial relief to struggling small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic,” U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan said. “We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to investigate and prosecute criminals who stole pandemic relief funds.”

During an October episode of the podcast, Robertson was asked if she would choose integrity over poverty when she was asked about how she might react if she had an opportunity to make money quickly.

“I choose integrity and whatever else it brings. I don’t choose selling your soul to the devil. Because that would mean I am willing to belittle myself and degrade myself for the love of what? Of a dollar,” Robertson said, even though she knew the Department of Justice was already investigating her.

“How my kids view me and respect me, means more to me than earning a quick dollar for me to be something that I’m not,” Robertson added.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia reported that Special Agent in Charge Mark H. Morini, Jr. said: “The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration will aggressively pursue individuals who commit fraud against the American taxpayer by making false claims to obtain Paycheck Protection Program loans intended for legitimate businesses who needed it to survive the pandemic.”

“We want to express our gratitude to our federal partners and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for their assistance in holding these individuals to account.”

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