COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSPA) – A Sumter woman was sentenced to 30 months in prison for a fraud scheme orchestrated during the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to evidence presented during the trial, Maggie-Anne Boler, 61, defrauded the United States out of $180,000 when she submitted false tax returns and a fraudulent Payroll Protection Plan (PPP) loan.

Boler received a $20,000 PPP loan based on her fraudulent claims. At the same time, she was receiving thousands of dollars in unemployment benefits during the pandemic.

Evidence showed that Boler claimed unsubstantiated withholdings while preparing tax returns for herself, her disabled brother, and others, resulting in as much as $44,000 in refunds. Some of the family members were unemployed and did not actually have withholdings during the year.

When the IRS discovered the fraudulent returns, Boler’s friends and family were forced to repay the funds. Many of them testified at the trail, claiming Boler charged a fee for preparing the returns and promised her methods were lawful.

In addition to the 30 month sentence, Boler was ordered to repay $53,696 in restitution to the United States Small Business Administration and the IRS.