Crime & Courts

Man agrees to plead guilty to ‘corrupting’ Wells Fargo employees in fraud scheme

Jerry Lee Grier Jr.
Jerry Lee Grier Jr.

A Charlotte man has agreed to plead guilty to bank fraud after he and a group of accomplices “corrupted” Wells Fargo employees and defrauded the company of at least $100,000, according to federal court documents.

Jerry Lee Grier Jr. and other scheme participants engaged in a bank fraud scheme in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia between about June 2014 and April 2015, court documents filed Friday show.

Grier could face a maximum term of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine. He has not yet been sentenced, and the investigation continues.

Grier and accomplices obtained Wells Fargo customer account information, such as account numbers, Social Security numbers and other personal information, by lying to Wells Fargo employees, court documents show. Grier and the accomplices contacted Wells Fargo tellers and employees located in Charlotte and other cities, using the account information to impersonate Wells Fargo customers. Among other things, they would claim to be seeking assistance for cash transfers between accounts, documents say.

In order to complete the unlawful transactions, Grier and his group members lied to Wells Fargo employees, claiming, for example, they were in urgent need of cash.

Grier and others would send friends and relatives to conduct the transaction on their behalf, and once inside the bank, these participants would complete the fraudulent transaction, documents show.

Transactions usually involved transfers or withdrawals from Wells Fargo accounts, documents say.

A Wells Fargo representative declined to comment on the case but said Wells Fargo customer accounts are protected from fraudulent activity in all situations.

This criminal charge is not the first for Grier. In 2011, Grier pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud after he and his group members tried to use customer information to get nearly $350,000 from Bank of America and Wachovia.

Chaney: 704-358-5197