A Florida woman is facing identity theft charges after she allegedly used a Miami woman’s Social Security number to work as a barista at St. Ambroeus on Royal Poinciana Way in Palm Beach, police said.
Sara Elizabet Romero, 31, was arrested and released on $6,000 bond.
Palm Beach Police was alerted of Romero’s use of false identification when the Miami Police Department contacted them on Oct. 19 about a fraud allegation made by a woman in Miami, the report said.
The woman said she had been told by the Florida Department of Employment Opportunity in May that her claim for unemployment benefits had been denied because her Social Security number was attached to someone who was working and living in Palm Beach County, the report said.
Police said the person using the Miami woman’s Social Security number was Romero.
Documents obtained by Palm Beach Police showed that St. Ambroeus and its holding company SA Hospitality Group hired Romero as a barista in September 2017. She worked there until she was terminated in January. Attached to the documents was a copy of Romero’s Social Security card, which matched the Social Security number of the woman who filed the complaint in Miami, the report said.
The documents also included Romero’s I-9 immigration form, which is used by Homeland Security to verify the identity and employment authorization of people hired for employment in the United States.
The report does not say why Romero was fired from the restaurant.
Police said that Romero’s use of the fraudulent ID prevented the Miami woman from obtaining unemployment benefits due to her because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Romero was charged with criminal use of personal identification information and uttering forged documents, both felonies.