A former U.S. Olympic speed skating champion has been indicted on charges that she fraudulently obtained $10 million in COVID-19 relief aid and used part of the money to help finance a film made by “Lord of the Rings” star Elijah Wood.
Federal prosecutors in Utah say Allison Baver, 41, had filed several applications in April 2020 for Paycheck Protection Program loans, claiming her entertainment company had as many as 430 employees and a monthly payroll of over $4 million.
But prosecutors say the company, Allison Baver Entertainment, had no employees and no monthly payroll. Nonetheless, Baver’s applications were approved and she received a payment of just under $10 million, according to court documents.
A message left with Baver, who lives in Taylorsville, Utah, wasn’t immediately returned. It wasn’t immediately clear whether she had retained an attorney.
Prosecutors say Baver used $150,000 of the money to help finance a film called “No Man of God,” that was produced by Wood’s production outfit, Company X. The film, about the relationship between serial killer Ted Bundy and an FBI special agent, was released earlier this year and starred Wood as the FBI agent.
Baver is listed in the film’s credits as an executive producer and, according to IMDB, had an uncredited role in the film.
A message left with a representative for Wood wasn’t immediately returned.