The former chief financial officer of Wyoming Catholic College is accused of defrauding the Wyoming Business Council and a New York business out of more than $15 million.

According to documents filed in US District Court for Wyoming, Paul McCown is charged with seven counts of wire fraud. Wire fraud is punishable by up to 20 years behind bars.

Court documents state McCown established an LLC, McCowen Enterprises, in 2019 and sought out investors so that it could carry on as a gin distillery beginning in 2020.

Charging documents state McCown submitted an application to the Wyoming Business Council for $50,000 in which he claimed his business suffered $50,000 in losses resulting from COVID-19 on June 8, 2020.

Additionally, court documents state, McCowen submitted an application to the business council on August 4, 2020 claiming that McCown Enterprises suffered $493,000 in losses resulting from COVID-19.

On September 15, 2020, McCown allegedly claimed $491,863 in losses from COVID-19 to the business council.

Federal court documents state between March 12, 2021 and July 1, 2021, McCown "devised a scheme" to defraud a New York business out of $14.7 million.

According to court documents, the business transferred the money to McCown on May 11, 2021.

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