NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A Portsmouth man was sentenced, on Oct. 13, to a little under five years in prison for a wire fraud and identity theft scheme in Norfolk, according to a release.

29-year-old Dominque M. Avery used another person’s identify to secure incorporation documents for a fake business claiming to provide technology services in March 2021, according to court documents.

Avery used those documents, a forged check and personal identifying information, or PII, of several individuals to cause an out-of-state payroll service to direct deposit more than $150,000 into various bank accounts. The business, Home Technology Innovations, or HTI, was used to fraudulently obtain funds for the salaries of HTI’s non-existent employees, according to the release.

Avery accessed and used a substantial portion of the funds deposited into each account before the scheme was discovered, according to a news release.

Avery was convicted of similar federal fraud offenses in the past. This most recent incident occurred only months after completing his prior federal sentence, and he used the PII of several of the victims in the prior case to commit these new crimes.

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