Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot said Tuesday he has suspended processing of electronic and paper tax returns from 16 Liberty Tax Service franchise locations due to a high volume of questionable returns received, on top of seven Baltimore-area Liberty locations that he suspended processing last week.

Some of the suspicious characteristics detected on the tax returns included business income reported when taxpayers did not own a business, refund amounts requested much higher than previous year tax returns, inflated and/or undocumented business expenses, dependents claimed when taxpayer did not provide required 50 percent support or care, and inflated wages and withholding information.

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