Former Employee of Health Insurance Company Sentenced for Possessing More Than 50 Customers’ Identities that she Stole from her Employer
Some of the victims’ information was used to file false tax returns with the IRS
A former health insurance company employee was sentenced to 32 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $16,264 for possessing more than 50 customers’ identities that she stole from her employer.
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Kelly R. Jackson, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), and Tony Pustizzi, Chief, Coral Springs Police Department (CSPD), made the announcement.
Quinzella J. Romer, 39, previously pled guilty to one count of possession of fifteen or more unauthorized access devices (social security numbers) issued to other persons, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1029(a)(3) and 2, and one count of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A(a)(1).
According to court documents, on April 8, 2014, CSPD officers conducted a traffic stop of a vehicle that Romer was driving. During this traffic stop, officers determined that Romer had an outstanding arrest warrant for petit theft. A pat down was conducted of Romer’s person, and law enforcement found a Florida driver’s license in another person’s name and a cellular phone. After obtaining a search warrant, law enforcement searched Romer's cellular phone where they found over 20 screenshots containing more than 50 names, Social Security numbers, and dates of birth of health insurance customers.
Romer was employed as a Short-Term Disability Benefit Manager at a health insurance company from June 18, 2007 until August 23, 2013, and it was determined that the screenshots were taken from her work station at the company.
Further investigation revealed that 12 of the names and social security numbers found in Romer's phone were victims of tax-related identity theft for tax year 2013. The tax returns claimed refunds of $38,196, and the IRS actually paid $16,264.
Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of IRS-CI and the Coral Springs Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Cary O. Aronovitz.
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 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 www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.