Virginia man pleads guilty to $1M virus fraud scheme

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A northern Virginia man has pleaded guilty to a $1.4 million fraud scheme to obtain federal funds meant for businesses struggling under the coronavirus pandemic.

Tarik Jaafar, 42, of Woodbridge, admitted in U.S. District Court in Alexandria on Tuesday that he created four shell companies to fraudulently apply for loans under the Paycheck Protection Program.

Prosecutors say he and his wife filed 18 separate loan applications seeking $6.6 million. They actually received $1.4 million in loans from various banks.

His wife, Monica Magdalena Jaworska, 43, of Ashburn, is also charged in the scheme and is scheduled to plead guilty next week.

The two were arrested in June at Kennedy International Airport in New York after purchasing one-way tickets to Poland, authorities said.

The vast majority of the funds were frozen but Jaafar was able to withdraw at least $30,000 in cash, authorities said.

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