Apollo Nida, husband of Real Housewives of Atlanta's Phaedra Parks, pled guilty yesterday to charges of mail, wire, and bank fraud in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.
Nida has allegedly stolen the identities of more than 50 people and laundered more than $2.3 million over the past four years. His charges could land him in prison for up to 30 years, along with a fine of up to $1 million.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Alana Black, detailed Nida's fraud as follows:
Nida opened a fake debit collection agency to gain access to databases full of individual's personal information. The agency gave him the access to steal people's identity and find unclaimed funds, including refunds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, stolen U.S. treasury checks, and refunds from fraudulent U.S. income tax returns.
He then had his accomplice Gayla St. Julien — who received a sentence of 61 months in April — open UPS mailboxes and bank checking accounts using the fake identities he acquired through his agency to deposit those checks in so he could pocket the money.
Nida also created fake auto dealerships to get auto loans for phantom cars.
The U.S. Secret Service has been working to get Nida since they caught St. Julien. They were able to obtain his laptop which held a lot of evidence — more than Apollo was able to deny.
In court, Nida took full responsibility for his actions and expressed regret for hurting his family and all those affected by his fraud. "It was a dumb situation I put myself in," he said.
He also shared that he began the whole scheme because of the pressure he felt to keep up with how much money Parks makes. He maintains that the RHOA star knew nothing about his illegal activity and was under the impression that he was running a legit debt collection agency the entire time.
Nida's sentencing hearing will take place on July 8th at 2 p.m. He and Parks have two children together.