West Bloomfield couple accused of stealing nearly $150,000 from Payroll Protection Program

A West Bloomfield couple is accused of stealing almost $150,000 in three separate fraudulent Payroll Protection Program loans.

Adebowale Ajagbe, 46, and Tracy Hall, 38, have both been charged with counts of false pretenses, using a computer to commit a crime, uttering and publishing, and conspiracy.

A release from Attorney General Dana Nessel detailed how both acquired tens of thousands of dollars through PPP loans that had false information about businesses that were listed on the application.

Ajagbe secured two loans worth $47,500 and $49,165 while Hall is accused of stealing $49,010.

In the first case, Ajagbe applied and received money at the beginning of May 2020 after claiming on a loan application that he had eight employees and a monthly payroll of $19,000 connected to a company called Zuvan Technologies. 

Nessel's office confirmed there were no unemployment payroll withholdings associated with the company.

In the other case, Ajagbe allegedly defrauded tens of thousands of additional funds at the end of July 2020, when he applied for money for a business called Mercury Financial Corp. However, that was dissolved in 2008. 

Hall originally applied for $52,000 in PPP funds at the end of June 2020 on behalf of a company called DND Global Marketing. She claimed the company had a monthly payroll of $20,800 for 15 employees. However, records show that the company hasn't had a business registration or employees since 2010.

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Both were arraigned in Oakland County District Court, receiving a $50,000 personal recognizance bond.

"Financial relief offered to struggling businesses caught up in the devastation created by COVID-19 has been a lifeline to countless Michiganders and people across the country as we continue to navigate this pandemic," Nessel said. "My office will not tolerate attempts to take advantage of those funds when so many continue to struggle to make ends meet right now." 

A probable cause conference is scheduled for May 25.

Each crime, if convicted, could result in a 15-year sentence.