A Massachusetts man who faked his own suicide to avoid being charged for defrauding the government out of $543,000 in COVID-19 relief loans was sentenced to nearly five behind bars, federal prosecutors said.
David Adler Staveley, 54, of Andover, was the first person in the country accused of seeking pandemic small business loans under false pretenses.
Prosecutors said Staveley and co-conspirator David Andrew Butziger, 53, claimed they owned four businesses — including three restaurants — that went under due to the COVID-19 lockdown. In reality, they didn’t own any of the businesses, the feds said in a press release Thursday.
The phony restaurateurs fibbed on an application for the Paycheck Protection Program, telling a Rhode Island bank they had “large monthly payrolls”