St. Thomas Man Who Stole $300K From His Father’s Security Company Pleads Guilty
CHARLOTTE AMALIE — A St. Thomas man who stole $300,000 from his businessman father and tried to hide that fact by funneling the money through various bank accounts — admitted his guilt in federal court, authorities said.
Lenroy Ravalier Jr., 29, pleaded guilty to bank fraud in U.S. District Court on St. Thomas, U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said today.
According to court documents filed in the case, Ravalier forged checks in his father’s name totaling over $300,000, in order to obtain those funds for himself.
Ravalier opened a “laundering account” at Banco Popular in December 2018 and stole checks from his father, which he forged and used to withdraw $303,000, according to court records. Investigators said Ravalier deposited the money in the “laundering account” and a credit union account, which he used to try and conceal his fraud, and closed the laundering account in March 2019.
Ravalier is also facing a lawsuit filed by FirstBank Puerto Rico on Sept. 2.
The bank reimbursed Ravalier’s father for the missing $303,000 taken from his account on June 17, 2019, and “Mr. Ravalier acknowledged that he has been made whole and that FirstBank is the victim that is entitled to pursue restitution,” according to the lawsuit. “FirstBank was able to recoup a total of $134,000 that remained on deposit in defendant’s account with Banco Popular,” but suffered damages totaling $169,000, according to the lawsuit.
The bank is seeking restitution from Ravalier for that amount, as well as interest, damages, attorneys’ fees and other relief the court may deem reasonable.
He was indicted by a grand jury on October 8 on two counts each of bank fraud, grand larceny, aggravated identity theft, money laundering and forgery.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Nathan Brooks.
The court will set a sentencing hearing date for Ravalier at a later time.