NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — A Hampton man was sentenced to 27 months in prison for a fraud scheme to receive COVID-19 unemployment benefits.

Court documents show that 27-year-old Demichael J. Peeples submitted false unemployment claims with the Commonwealth of Virginia and the State of California for himself and on behalf of others.

According to a news release from the U.S. District Attorney’s Office, Peeples recruited people on social media to provide their information so he could file fraudulent claims in their names.

In those claims, Peeples falsely represented the applicants’ work histories and that they lost employment due to the pandemic. In most cases, Peeples had the benefit payments delivered to his home and kept the proceeds for himself.

Peeples is a documented member of the “10K” street gang and while on pretrial release, failed to comply with his conditions of release.

After pleading guilty, the court revoked Peeples’ bond and remanded him into the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.