Portland Woman Sentenced to Federal Prison for Stealing Covid Relief Funds While on Supervised Release

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FILE PHOTO: American flag waves outside the U.S. Department of Justice Building in Washington

PORTLAND, Ore.—A Portland woman was sentenced to federal prison today for violating the terms of her post-prison supervised release by submitting two fraudulent applications for loans intended to help small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tiairre Travonne Chaney, 35, was sentenced to six months in federal prison followed by a 24-month term of supervised release.

According to court documents, in September 2015, Chaney was charged by criminal information with one count of wire fraud after she submitted 35 fraudulent income tax returns and caused the IRS to pay her more than $155,000 in unwarranted tax refunds. One month later, Chaney pleaded guilty to the single charge and, in February 2016, was sentenced to one year and one day in federal prison followed by a three-year term of supervised release. Chaney was released from prison in November 2016.

By June 2018, Chaney was found to have violated her supervised release conditions by failing to pay restitution, failing to file true and correct taxes, and failing to report to her probation officer. As a result, she was placed on GPS monitoring for 30 days. In December 2019, Chaney violated her supervision terms a second time by again failing to report to her probation officer and pay restitution and also failing to obtain lawful employment. She was sentenced to three months in prison and her 33-month term of supervised release was reimposed.

In January and May 2021, Chaney violated her supervised release a third time by submitting to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) two fraudulent applications for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs)for Tncw Baked Goods, LLC, a straw entity she formed after the onset of the pandemic. In her applications, Chaney falsely denied being on supervised release and denied her felony conviction. In the second application, she falsely claimed Tncw Baked Goods, LLC, realized gross revenues of $45,663 in 2020 when in fact it had done no business whatsoever. 

This case was investigated by the SBA Office of Inspector General and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA). It was prosecuted by Ryan W. Bounds, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

Anyone with information about allegations of attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Justice Department’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF Web Complaint Form at: https://www.justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.