Federal authorities have accused three new defendants of participating in a scheme that allegedly submitted more than 150 fraudulent loan applications requesting nearly $ 22 million in COVID-19 relief funds authorized under the CARES Act, according to Friday. Justice.

The new round of arrests builds on last year’s case in which four people were charged. Manuk Grigoryan, 27, from Sun Valley; Edvard Paronyan, 40, of Granada Hills; and Vahe Dadyan, 41, of Glendale were arraigned Thursday afternoon in US District Court in downtown Los Angeles. The judge released them on bail and ordered them to stand trial on May 4.

The case involves a 33-count alternative indictment that charges a total of eight defendants with using false, stolen or synthetic identities to submit fraudulent claims for loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration SBA by through the Economic Disaster Relief Program, or EIDL, and the Paycheck Protection Program, or PPP, under the CARES Act.

There is also a fourth new defendant indicted in this replacement indictment – Arman Hayrapetyan, 38, of Glendale – although he has yet to be arrested and is still wanted by federal authorities.

Last November, a fraud investigation led to the arrest of co-defendants Richard Ayvazyan and his wife, Marietta Terabelian; his brother, Artur Ayvazyan; and her sister-in-law, Tamara Dadyan. All four were charged with conspiracy to commit bank and wire transfer fraud, four counts of bank fraud and six counts of wire fraud.

The conspiracy and bank fraud charges alleged in the indictment each carry a maximum sentence of 30 years in federal prison. Electronic fraud accounts each carry a maximum penalty of 20 years.