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Jail for man who made false claims for COVID relief

An Auckland man who made fraudulent applications for COVID-19 financial relief has been jailed.

The Small Business Cashflow Loan (SBCL) scheme was implemented under urgency in May 2020 using a “High Trust” application model so small businesses could access funds quickly.

Jason Laurence Gray made two applications for loans even though he knew a business he was part of didn’t meet the SBCS loan criteria.

Gray applied for $27,000 and received $13,600. He was sentenced on 16 May on the two charges laid by Inland Revenue; as well as a police charge of using forged documents; and a Corrections charge of breaching home detention.

In total, he was sentenced to 20 months in prison after appearing in the Pukekohe District Court.

He made the applications for the SBCL within a week of each other in June 2020 and checked nearly 40 times how the first application was progressing.

Inland Revenue began investigating Gray, and all the SBCS loans associated with him, when it found out one of his bank accounts was used to receive loan money on behalf of an associate.

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Last updated: 16 May 2023
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