A former Olympic speedskater lied on loan applications to fraudulently receive $10 million in coronavirus relief money — which she partly invested in a movie about a serial killer, federal prosecutors said.
Allison Marie Baver, who won the bronze medal as part of Team USA’s 3000-meter women’s relay team in Vancouver in 2010, was charged Wednesday with money laundering and eight counts of making a false statement to a bank, according to the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Utah.
Following her speedskating career, the Utah woman launched Allison Baver Entertainment, which bills itself as a “purpose-driven” film and television production company.
Prosecutors said Baver submitted eight Paycheck Protection Program loan applications in April 2020 seeking $10 million for her entertainment firm. In each request, Baver said her average monthly payroll was as much as $4.7 million, but she actually had no payroll at all, court documents show.
Baver also indicated she employed between 100 and 430 people, but federal prosecutors claim that was untrue as well — alleging her company did not actually have anyone on its payroll.
Allison Baver won the bronze medal as part of Team USA’s 3000-meter women’s relay team in Vancouver in 2010.Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
The false statements led to Baver illegally obtaining $10 million in the coronavirus relief loans — of which she later transferred $150,000 to the production company behind “No Man of God,” a 2021 film starring actor Elijah Wood about serial killer Ted Bundy, KTSU reported.
Baver made an uncredited appearance in the film, which was released in August, according to the Internet Movie Database.
Baver, 41, has not entered a plea, but is set to be arraigned in federal court on Jan. 18. She did not return a message seeking comment Thursday, KTSU reported.
Allison Baver launched Allison Baver Entertainment, a “purpose-driven” film and television production company.Allison Baver Entertainment
Baver, who retired from skating in 2017, launched her company two years later, according to the Salt Lake Tribune. Nearly 51,000 businesses in the state got loans via the federal relief program, but her firm was one of just 41 that received $5 million or more, the newspaper reported.
Baver told the newspaper last year her company had “several projects in development” and that each required a substantial number of employees, but declined to elaborate.
“Due to the need for large crews in close proximity, these types of productions have been particularly disrupted by the pandemic, and we recognize our responsibility to put these professionals back to work as soon and as safely as possible,” Baver told the newspaper in an email. “We hope to set a good example as the entertainment industry gets back on its feet.”
Allison Baver claimed her average monthly payroll was as much as $4.7 million and that she employed between 100 and 430 people.Santiago Felipe/Getty Images
Federal prosecutors want Baver to forfeit roughly $9.7 million of the ill-gotten funds. She also faces up to 40 years if convicted on all counts, according to KTSU.
Court records did not list an attorney for Baver, and a spokeswoman for “No Man of God” did not respond to a request for comment, NBC News reported Friday.