Lynn man pleads guilty to federal wire fraud, identity theft charges

LYNN — A man from the city pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal fraud and identity theft charges.

Acting U.S. Attorney Joshua S. Levy said in a release Wednesday that Steeve Jean, 36, is facing the possibility of decades in prison after pleading guilty to federal charges of wire fraud, aggravated identity theft, and unauthorized use of a social security number.

The announcement from Levy and Jodi Cohen, the special agent in charge of the Boston division of the FBI, said that in April 2021, Jean submitted two fraudulent federal Paycheck Protection Program loan applications claiming business losses for a business that didn’t exist, with the purported losses suffered when Jean was serving a state prison sentence.

According to ProPublica’s PPP loan database, a recipient listed as Steeve Jean, who reported having a self-employed specialty trade contractor business, was approved for a $20,833 loan for payroll on April 14, 2021, from Harvest Small Business Finance LLC. 

A second $20,833 loan was granted to Steeve Jean from Fountainhead SBF LLC on April 26, 2021.

Both of the loans, which, with interest, totaled $41,858, were forgiven as of Oct. 6, 2021.

Starting in September 2021, Jean rented an apartment in Lynn under an assumed name. He made no rent payments before leaving the apartment when steps were taken to evict him in June 2022.

Jean is facing 20 years in prison for a wire fraud charge, along with a fine of up to $250,000.

The charge of aggravated identity theft comes with a mandatory sentence of two years and a fine of up to $250,000, while unauthorized use of a social security number comes with a sentence of up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

All charges include sentences with three years of supervised release.

Jean was charged in April of this year.

U.S. District Court Judge Denise J. Casper scheduled sentencing for Nov. 29.

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