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Vernon Hills CPA gets 27 months for $1.8M fraud

Updated: May 3, 2013 2:29PM

A CPA who pleaded guilty last year to defrauding US Bankcorp and five clients out of more than $1.8 million has been sentenced to more than two years in federal prison.

Jeffrey B. Travis, 51, of Vernon Hills, pleaded guilty on Oct. 23, 2012, to bank fraud, and was sentenced Friday to 27 months by U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman, according to U.S. Attorney’s office spokesman Randall Samborn. He faced up to 78 months under terms of a plea agreement.

Travis, who ran Gross & Travis Ltd., and Travis and Associates, both in Deerfield, admitted in the plea agreement to defrauding clients from at least May 2002 until December 2008, according to prosecutors.

A CPA and tax preparer, he prepared hundreds of checks for small business clients payable to vendors, retirement programs and tax authorities, but then deposited them into personal accounts at US Bank, prosecutors said.

He would then withdrew money — more than $1.8 million — for personal use, and even altered some of the checks to increase the amounts paid, prosecutors alleged.

A hearing on the amount of restitution to be paid was continued until May 16, Samborn said.

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