West Virginia couple sentenced for defrauding elderly victim to purchase beach house
WHEELING, WEST VIRGINIA – A Wetzel County couple was sentenced in federal court today after they stole nearly $400,000.00 from a 90-year-old victim to purchase a vacation home in the Outer Banks, United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, announced.
In October 2014, a jury found Timothy Summers, 67, and Lea Ann Summers, 52, of Proctor, West Virginia, guilty of one count of “Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud” and one count of “Securities Fraud.” The jury further found Lea Ann Summers guilty of four counts of “Mail Fraud.” The jury further found Timothy Summers guilty of one count of “Interstate Transportation of Stolen Property.” Timothy and Lea Ann Summers were each sentenced today to 24 months in prison.
Evidence presented at trial showed that the couple collaborated to liquidate a significant portion of the victim’s investment holdings in PPG Industries stock. In late 2013, Lea Ann Summers called the stock holding company, Computershare, impersonating the victim, and sold 2,175 shares of PPG Industries stock.
Mrs. Summers then arranged for the proceeds of the sale, approximately $397,030.15, to be sent to herself rather than the victim. Timothy Summers deposited the proceeds and transferred the money into a bank account which he shared only with his wife. The couple then travelled to North Carolina and purchased a beach house in the Outer Banks for $243,173.61. As part of today’s sentence, the couple was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $397,030.15.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys David Perri and Michael Stein prosecuted the case on behalf of the government. The Federal Bureau of Investigation led the investigation.
Chief U.S. District Judge John Preston Bailey presided.