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Who Is Charlie Javice, The Founder Of Frank Now Accused of Defrauding JPMorgan?

Federal prosecutors said Javice exaggerated the number of Frank customers to get the bank to acquire her company.
Cover Image Source: Fraud | Pexels | Photo by Ono Kosuki
Cover Image Source: Fraud | Pexels | Photo by Ono Kosuki

Charlie Javice, a graduate of Wharton School, is accused of defrauding JPMorgan in the sale of her former college financial aid company, Frank, and is set to face trial this year. In May 2023, she faced charges of securities fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, and conspiracy. Federal prosecutors alleged that she had artificially inflated Frank's user numbers, misrepresenting the platform's reach and value. 

Image Source: LinkedIn | Charlie Javice
Image Source: LinkedIn | Charlie Javice

In 2016, Javice founded Frank, a startup aimed at enhancing affordability in higher education, inspired by her challenges with financial aid. Recognized for her achievements, she made it to the Forbes 30 under 30 list in 2019. In 2021, JPMorgan acquired the company for $175 million, appointing Javice as the managing director.

However, federal prosecutors alleged that she falsely claimed over four million users when the actual count was only a few hundred thousand.  

In April 2023, the U.S. Attorney for New York's Southern District charged Javice with conspiracy and three counts of fraud—wire, bank, and securities. The charges were related to an alleged plan involving misrepresenting the success, size, and market penetration of her company, Frank, which had garnered positive attention for its platform simplifying the FAFSA (Free Federal Student Aid Application).


Upon her indictment, Javice pleaded not guilty and was released on a $2 million bond. Subsequently, in October, she made a bold claim that JPMorgan had failed to produce a significant number of documents crucial to her defense. These allegedly missing documents included JPMorgan's internal assessment of Frank and communications between employees. Javice contended that the government's response indicated a deliberate inaction on their part.

Image Source: Charlie Javice (C) is seen arriving at court | Photo by MEGA | GC Images
Charlie Javice (C) is seen arriving at court | Photo by MEGA | GC Images (Getty)

U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein has set the trial date for October 2024. This decision followed a court order filed in November last year, instructing federal prosecutors to compel JPMorgan Chase to produce additional evidence related to company employees mentioned in the complaint. If convicted, Javice could face a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison. 

Image Source: Charlie Javice (C) is seen arriving at court | Photo by MEGA | GC Images
Charlie Javice is seen arriving at court | Photo by MEGA | GC Images (Getty)

However, this isn't the first time Javice has faced federal scrutiny. In 2018, she settled with the federal government over allegations of misrepresenting Frank's connections to the Department of Education. Javice is scheduled to appear in court for a status conference in January. This meeting will bring together prosecutors and the defense, possibly shedding light on the case and any developments in the ongoing legal battle.