The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. has permanently barred a former Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. broker after he allegedly stole around $1 million in office equipment from his former firm.
Between February and August of this year, Jeffrey Brian Grove, who was a financial consultant in the firm's Melbourne, Fla., branch, used the firm's order system to purchase supplies and equipment, and then sold the items to “different individuals,” according to a letter of acceptance posted to Finra's disciplinary database. The letter did not specify what equipment was allegedly stolen.
Mr. Grove signed the letter agreeing to Finra's sanctions without admitting or denying the findings.
Mr. Grove, who had spent his 17-year career in financial services with Schwab, serviced approximately 250 accounts, Finra said. Schwab terminated his employment on Aug. 29, according to the letter.
He was discharged for “allegations regarding Mr. Grove's purchases of unauthorized office equipment through the firm's office supply channels,” according to his record on Finra's BrokerCheck database.
A Schwab spokeswoman, Sarah Bulgatz, said in an e-mailed statement that the firm had cooperated with law enforcement in the investigation and that there is “no evidence of any client impact as a result of Mr. Grove's illegal activities.”
She deferred additional questions to law enforcement.
In August, Mr. Grove was charged with two felony counts, according to a report from Schwab on Mr. Grove's public BrokerCheck record. He was charged in the Circuit Court of the Ninth Judicial Circuit in and for Orange County, Fla., with conspiracy to traffic in oxycodone, a prescription painkiller, and “unlawful use of a two-way communication device to commit a crime,” according to the BrokerCheck report. He pleaded not guilty, according to court documents. His attorney, Heather Clyde Harris, could not immediately be reached for comment.
Mr. Grove had one other disclosure event on his record for possession of more than 20 grams of cannabis in 1997.
Mr. Grove was unable to be reached for comment.