'Might Morphin Power Rangers' star Austin St. John charged with fraud in Texas

The funds were meant for COVID-19 relief

Photo of Steven Santana

Austin St. John, also known as the Red Power Ranger, is among 18 people that have been charged with Payment Protection Program fraud in Texas. This isn't the first time former Power Rangers stars have been in trouble, but how will St. John morph his way out of this one? 

St. John, whose real name is Jason Lawrence Geiger, was charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud in a group scheme led by a man named Michael Hill of Mineral Wells, Texas, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office Eastern District of Texas. 

All 18 people, including St. John, defrauded business lenders of 16 loans worth at least $3.5 million, according to the release. The group either fabricated a business or used the information of an old business to fill out fraudulent applications for the PPP loan program.

The U.S. government allocated $349 billion for PPP, which provided forgivable loans to small businesses through the CARES Act in March 2020. The loans should have been used to pay employees as COVID-19 pandemic safety measures hit businesses. The group, including St. John, allegedly did not use the funds as they were intended. 

If found guilty, each person can face up to 20 years in prison. 

St. John played Jason Lee Scott from 1993 to 1994 in the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, which (in case you didn't know) is about high school teenagers who turn into warriors called Power Rangers to fight cosmic evil forces. He later returned for Power Rangers Zeo and Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie