An Internal Revenue Service revenue officer has pleaded guilty to fraud charges for filing tax returns using taxpayers’ identities and failing to report income he received from an unauthorized tax business.
James C. Brewer, who worked at an IRS office in Edison, N.J., pled guilty in a federal courthouse in Brooklyn on Tuesday to 12 counts of filing or preparing false tax returns, 12 counts of wire fraud, and one count of mail fraud in connection with a multi-year scheme to falsify his tax returns and other people’s tax returns and to enrich himself with inflated tax refunds. Brewer also pleaded guilty to committing perjury in U.S. Tax Court in 2012.
Brewer, 39, of Staten Island, N.Y., failed to report the income he received for his unauthorized tax preparation business, underreported the gross receipts he earned from his internet retail business, and claimed false dependents on federal tax returns he prepared and filed on his behalf for three tax years, according to prosecutors. Brewer also participated in a multi-year scheme in which he prepared and filed false tax returns for others. He listed false dependents, false deductions and other false information on the returns, to inflate tax refunds for his clients.
Brewer also listed the names and Social Security numbers of various people as dependents on those tax returns without authorization. He diverted part of those clients’ refunds to himself, in some cases without the clients’ authorization or knowledge. Finally, in an effort to fraudulently obtain a First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit for himself, Brewer lied under oath about his residence when he testified in a matter in the U.S. Tax Court in New York.
Brewer faces up to 20 years in prison for each wire fraud and mail fraud count, up to three years for each tax fraud count, and up to five years for the perjury count. As part of his plea agreement, Brewer agreed to make restitution to the IRS of over $70,000, plus interest and penalties, and he is also subject to fines.
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