(KTLA) – A little more than a year after she fled the country, a California woman who was convicted of pandemic-related fraud has been brought back to the United States.
Tamara Dadyan, 43, arrived back in Los Angeles Monday night after American authorities determined she and two of her co-conspirators fled to Montenegro after their convictions, the U.S. Department of Justice said in a press release.
Dadyan, Richard Ayvazyan, and Marietta Terabelian were all located in Montenegro after they were sentenced to multiple years in prison for obtaining more than $20 million in Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loan COVID-19 relief funds, the DOJ said.
With the funds from their scheme, which also involved submitting fake documents to the Small Business Administration, the team “fraudulently obtained funds as down payments on three luxury homes in California,” the DOJ said.
“They also used the funds to buy gold coins, diamonds, jewelry, luxury watches, designer handbags, cryptocurrency, securities, and a Harley-Davidson motorcycle,” the release added.
The convictions for this scheme resulted in a 17-year sentence for Ayvazyan, a six-year sentence for Terabelian, and more than 10 years in prison for Dadyan.
Ayvazyan and Terabelian were extradited to the U.S. in November.
Anyone with information about allegations of attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by filling out the DOJ’s National Center for Disaster Fraud’s Web Complaint Form or calling the NCDF Hotline.