JSU linebacker arrested on federal charges of COVID relief fraud

USC linebacker Abdul-Malik McClain (42) sits on the bench during the final seconds of the...
USC linebacker Abdul-Malik McClain (42) sits on the bench during the final seconds of the second half of an NCAA college football game in a 37-14 loss to Texas, Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)(Eric Gay | AP)
Published: Dec. 21, 2021 at 10:27 AM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Jackson State linebacker Abdul-Malik McClain was arrested after a federal indictment on fraud charges.

McClain faces 10 counts of mail fraud and two counts of aggravated identity theft.

The alleged crimes happened while McClain was attending USC. The university is only referred to as “university 1″ in the indictment.

He announced his transfer to JSU in November 2020. According to the Los Angeles Times, he decided to transfer after his brother Munir was suspended and planning to leave the school.

Munir McClain was suspended from the team after he became the focus of an investigation by the FBI into alleged unemployment fraud. Munir is not named within his brother’s indictment.

The indictment claims Abdul-Malik McClain organized and assisted a group of football players to file for benefits through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program. The claims were filed in California.

The indictment says the claims contained false information about the football players’ prior employment. The claims were allegedly filed through their own names as well as the names of identity theft victims.

The claims paid out at least $227,736.

Abdul-Malik McClain was given a $20,000 bond and pleaded not guilty to the charges. He will stand trial on February 15.

Each mail fraud count carries a maximum of 20 years in prison, and aggravated identity theft carries a two year mandatory prison sentence.

McClain has since been removed from JSU’s online roster.

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