Edinboro man sentenced in wire fraud case

An Edinboro man has pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Douglas A. Grooms, 44, of 2003 Creekside Drive, pleaded guilty to one count before U.S. District Judge David S. Cercone.

In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that from June 2008 to September 2013, while employed as general manager of Community Chevrolet in Meadville, Grooms embezzled money from the dealership by writing dealership checks to a fictitious marketing company that he set up solely for the purpose of receiving the checks, resulting in a loss of $485,800 to Community Chevrolet.

Cercone scheduled sentencing at 12:45 p.m. July 11. The law provides for a total sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both.

Under the federal sentencing guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based on the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Pending sentencing, the court continued Grooms on bond.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Christian A. Trabold is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The United States Postal Inspection Service conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Grooms.