Tarzana couple convicted of $ 18 million in pandemic emergency fraud scam escape and are fleeing, FBI says

A Tarzana couple are on the run from federal authorities after cutting off their surveillance bracelets and fleeing while awaiting punishment for the theft of millions of dollars in coronavirus pandemic aids, the FBI said late Tuesday.

Richard Ayvazyan, 43, and Marietta Terabelian, 37, were convicted in June of conspiring with family members to fraudulently secure at least $ 18 million in emergency aid.

They created a comprehensive web of fictitious San Fernando Valley companies to secure loans under the Paycheck Protection and Economic Injury Disaster Loan programs.

The FBI’s office in Los Angeles said on Twitter that the two are now considered refugees.

They were scheduled to be sentenced on October 4.

“They have international connections as well as local ties, but we do not rule out anything about where they may have fled,” said FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller.

Federal authorities believe the couple fled Sunday afternoon from the $ 3.25 million house in Tarzana, which they bought with the loan money they stole, she said. They were convicted of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, conspiracy to launder money and related crimes.

Legal records showed the couple used a number of Los Angeles-based tort companies set up with stolen identities, forged tax returns and fake wages to collect taxpayers’ rescue money.

By August 2020, the group had applied for 151 loans to mostly shabby companies, some of them named after real ones.

On June 25, a federal jury in Los Angeles convicted Ayvazyan, Terabelian and two relatives of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, conspiracy to launder money and related crimes. Four accomplices pleaded guilty on the eve of the trial.

Give a Comment