Tax Fraud Blotter: Fitting False Scenarios

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A roundup of our favorite recent tax fraud cases.

Chicago: A federal court has ordered the tax prep firm Servicios Latinos Inc. to close its nationwide business.

The order comes after the Justice Department filed a civil lawsuit against the business and its owners, Georgina Lopez, Pamela Miranda and Jorge A. Miranda, alleging that the defendants falsely understated their clients’ tax liabilities or overstated clients’ entitlement to a refund. The injunction also prohibits Lopez, Pamela Miranda and Jorge Miranda from acting as federal tax preparers, owning or operating tax-preparation businesses and employing tax preparers.

The defendants agreed to entry of the injunction, but did not admit the allegations in the complaint.

According to the complaint, Servicios Latinos operated out of approximately 84 stores in as many as 30 states. The complaint alleged that the defendants’ employees prepared income tax returns that falsely claimed child tax credits and the EITC, claim incorrect filing statuses, and report incorrect income and expense figures.

The complaint alleges that Servicios Latinos has prepared more than 42,000 federal income tax returns since 2012. The IRS estimates that the loss to the U.S. Treasury from the defendants’ conduct exceeds $4.7 million for 2014 alone, according to the complaint.

Scottsdale, Ariz.: Preparer Demetrio Gregory has pleaded guilty to preparing and filing false and fraudulent returns.

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