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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Florida

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Former Delray Beach Resident Sentenced In Third Case Involving Identity Theft

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Donnell Young, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), announce that Jeffrey Emil Groover, 53, formerly of Delray Beach, was sentenced today before U.S. District Judge Dimitrouleas to 13 years and seven months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release.

On June 25, 2014, Groover was convicted by a jury of all six counts with which he was charged. Specifically, Groover was convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1349, three counts of bank fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1344, and two counts of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A.

According to records filed in this case and statements made in court, Groover used the personal identifying information (PII) of an individual without her knowledge or consent to open a checking account and obtain a debit/VISA card at TD Bank. Groover forged the name on the signature card for the account and, when asked for identification, produced a fraudulent, photo-switched Florida Driver's License with the individual’s correct information, but the defendant's photograph. Approximately one week after opening the account at TD Bank, Groover again used the individual’s PII to open a checking account at PNC Bank. When asked to provide two forms of identification for the account, Groover used the fraudulent debit/VISA card obtained from TD Bank, and the fraudulent, photo-switched Florida Driver's License. Groover directed the PNC banker to set up overdraft protection for the fraudulent checking account using the individual’s existing home equity line of credit. Between September 27, 2013 and September 30, 2013, Groover and his co-conspirators withdrew and attempted to withdraw approximately $170,000 from the individual’s home equity line of credit by cashing a $20,000 check drawn directly on the line of credit.

In a separate case involving an identity theft tax refund fraud scheme, Groover was sentenced on April 18, 2014, before U.S. District Judge Robin Rosenbaum to 60 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay $350,373.86 in restitution.

Noting Groover’s extensive criminal history, including numerous identity theft cases, the judge sentenced the defendant to a sentence significantly above the sentencing guideline range.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of IRS-CI. This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Adrienne Rabinowitz and Alexandra Hui.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

Updated March 12, 2015