A Moses Lake man faces federal charges after being accused of illegally receiving almost $42,000 in Cares money for a fictitious business.

Twenty-nine-year-old Dondre Jackson was arrested Thursday after being indicted Tuesday as part of the U.S. Attorney’s Eastern Washington COVID-19 Strike Force.

Jackson is accused of fraudulently-obtaining two Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans for a catering business that did not exist.

He could serve up to 25 years in prison if convicted on all counts against him.

Jackson claimed to have a business with one employee and an income of $103,208.

He's accused of crafting a scheme to defraud the SBA (Small Business Administration) and faces four counts of wire fraud, which carry a penalty of up to $20 years in prison, and two counts of fraudulent claims with a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison.

Separately, two Lincoln County residents, 36-year-old Stephanie Murphy and 42-year-old Stephen Murphy, were indicted this week on nine counts of fraud for fraudulently-obtaining three PPP loans for a fictitious landscaping and wood products manufacturing businesses in 2021.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office did not specify how much money the Murphy's are accused of obtaining fraudulently, but said the two along with Jackson collectively obtained more than $100,000 in relief funding that was designated for legitimate small businesses struggling with the impact of COVID-19.

The CARES Act offered eligible small businesses the opportunity to request and obtain relief money intended to offset the economic impacts of the pandemic for small and local businesses.

One of the programs, known as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), offered government-backed loans which could be forgiven if the small business receiving the loan used it for payroll and other eligible expenses.

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