COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Two central Ohio women are facing federal charges for fraudulently receiving more than $2.8 million in COVID-relief funds used to buy liposuction, a condominium in Westerville and property in Australia.
Lorie Schaefer, 62, of Westerville, allegedly received nearly $1.9 million in COVID-relief funds by fraudulently claiming an affiliation with an Ohio pizza company, according to Kenneth Parker, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio. Schaefer also allegedly assisted co-defendant Latisha C. Holloway, 42, of Reynoldsburg, in fraudulently receiving more than $980,000 in loans.
Schaefer fraudulently claimed affiliation with Flying Pizza restaurants in Dayton, Centerville and Fairborn. When notified that a loan for nearly $1.9 million had been filed in the name of Flying Pizza, Parker said the family-owned business said their restaurants could not justify such a large loan.
Still, Schaefer claimed to have 98 employees and allegedly submitted altered bank records as part of her application. She also claimed the business was established in March 2021, even though the original Flying Pizza was established in 1984. In addition, she claimed not to be under indictment despite having pending theft charges in Meigs County.
Bank records show Schaefer used the funds for personal expenses, like nearly $26,000 on liposuction, a $10,000 check for a “newborn baby gift” and more than $900,000 to purchase and renovate a condominium in Westerville. Parker said evidence also suggests Schaefer used the funds to purchase vehicles in Ohio and property in Australia.
Holloway also allegedly claimed to own a business called Jaguar Logistics, and stated on loan application documents that she had 76 employees and had a total gross income of $4.9 million. Her loan application was submitted within a month of Schaefer receiving loans and records indicate Holloway wired Schaefer $180,000 after receiving her own loan money.
Schaefer was arrested on Aug. 25 and Holloway was arrested on Wednesday.