Some of our favorite recent tax fraud cases.
Bel Air, Md.: Local resident Beverly Carden has pleaded guilty to defrauding the IRS and her payroll tax clients of up to $600,000.
Carden owned and operated AccuPay until its closure in March 2013. Her company provided payroll and payroll tax services to small and midsized businesses. Her husband Kevin ran the company’s tax department.
Authorities said her company received funds that it held in trust to turn over to the IRS and the state comptroller to pay employment taxes. AccuPay was, however, remitting only some of the funds to these agencies, with much of it instead diverted to a personal account in Beverly Carden’s name.
According to authorities, a client confronted AccuPay employees upon discovering the discrepancy in 2012, and the company paid that client's deficiencies. The company also claimed in a letter to clients that they hired a CFO to audit all tax filings and deposits dating back to 2009, but that person was actually a tax preparer Beverly Carden hired mostly to prepare her own taxes and those of AccuPay, not the company’s clients.
She also forged client signatures from old IRS power of attorney forms onto new ones, prosecutors alleged, and filed a falsified individual tax return for 2011 to conceal income made off the plot and filed no return for 2012.
She faces up to 23 years in prison on the charges. Sentencing is March 23. Kevin Carden has been indicted as well on charges arising from the scheme; he has pleaded not guilty.
Beaumont, Texas: Two Southeast Texas women have been sentenced in connection with an income tax return scheme. Stasha Franchell Anderson, 34, of Jasper, Texas, pleaded guilty on July 1 to aiding in the preparation of a false tax return and was sentenced to 36 months in federal prison. Jessica Bellis, 43, of Baytown, Texas, pleaded guilty on July 9 to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and was sentenced to 30 months in prison.
According to information presented in court, Derek Cornelius Briscoe, 36, held himself out as a tax preparer sometimes doing business as Thaferrets Tax Service from his residence in Jasper. Briscoe maintained contacts with the female inmates at the county jail in Beaumont, offering them a fee in exchange for ID information of other inmates that could be used to file false returns.
Anderson and Bellis were inmates who supplied Briscoe with the information of other inmates to file false returns for 2009, 2010 and 2011. During times when Anderson was not in jail, she also helped Briscoe prepare the false returns.
The false returns consisted of fictitious employment information, income and deductions for educational expenses. The refunds were deposited in bank accounts controlled by Briscoe, who was previously sentenced to 57 months in prison for his part in the scheme.
Anderson, Bellis and Briscoe were involved in the preparation of more than 500 false returns.
Anderson was also ordered to pay $156,519 restitution to the IRS, and Bellis to pay restitution in the amount of $30,000.
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