The owner of an Anchorage accounting and tax prep business has been indicted on charges that she engaged in a scheme to defraud her clients and her own family members of nearly $1 million.

Frances Yvonne Rowland, 42, the owner and operator of Carter and Associates, was indicted on 14 counts of wire fraud, 12 counts of aggravated identity theft, 12 counts of credit card fraud, two counts of mail fraud, and one count of obstructing the Internal Revenue Service.

Rowland allegedly obtained several credit cards in another person’s name without their knowledge and used them during 2005, 2006 and 2007. She also allegedly persuaded clients to pay monies due to the IRS to her own business trust account, promising that she would promptly transfer the funds to the IRS. But instead of paying the IRS as promised, she allegedly transferred the funds to other accounts that she controlled, and used the clients’ money to pay her business and personal expenses. She allegedly obtained approximately $703,950 in this manner.

Rowland is also alleged to have filed a false personal return, claiming to be a low-income taxpayer who qualified for the Earned Income Tax Credit. She is also charged with stealing her father-in-law’s identity in a scheme to obtain numerous credit cards in his name without his knowledge, and making nearly $90,000 in fraudulent charges.

The mail and wire fraud charges each carry a maximum prison term of 20 years, while the credit card fraud counts each carry a maximum term of 10 years. There is a mandatory consecutive prison term of two years for aggravated identity theft. A corrupt endeavor to obstruct the internal revenue laws carries a maximum prison term of three years. Each count carries a $250,000 maximum fine. 

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