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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Pennsylvania

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Former Car Dealership General Manager Sentenced to 11 More Months in Prison for Fraud Scheme

ERIE, Pa. - A former resident of Edinboro, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced in federal court to 11 months in jail on his conviction of violating federal bankruptcy laws, conspiracy to commit wire fraud and wire fraud in two separate cases, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today. The sentence imposed will be consecutive to the two-year sentence the defendant is presently serving.

United States District Judge David S. Cercone imposed the sentence on Douglas Alan Grooms, 47.

According to information presented to the court, Grooms concealed property from the United States Bankruptcy Trustee in connection with his bankruptcy case.  In addition, from in and around May 2015, to in and around March 2016, Grooms and two co-defendants engaged in a scheme to defraud auto loans providers by utilizing two straw purchasers to buy vehicles in their own names from Rick Weaver Buick GMC. The vehicles would then actually remain in a co-defendant's possession. The three facilitated the scheme by falsifying the loan applications to make the straw purchasers appear more credit worthy and by not revealing that the straw purchasers were buying multiple vehicles at the same time. The value of many of the vehicles was also inflated to increase the funds received by the co-conspirators.

Assistant United States Attorney Christian A. Trabold prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

United States Attorney Brady commended the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Pennsylvania State Police and the Erie Police Department for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Grooms.

Financial Fraud
Updated March 27, 2018