Some of our favorite recent tax fraud cases.
Monroe, La.: Tax preparer Richard Allan Scott, 38, has been found guilty of multiple counts of aiding or subscribing a false tax return.
Evidence revealed that more than 50 false returns for years 2011 and 2012 were prepared. Many of the returns contained fictitious information pertaining to W-2 withholdings, dependent care expenses and tax credits. The total amount stolen during the scheme was approximately $338,380.
Scott faces up to three years in prison, five years of supervised release, a $250,000 fine and restitution for each count. Sentencing is January 4.
Laredo, Texas: Preparer Maricela Hernandez, 40, has reportedly been arrested in connection with scamming a client out of $1,000.
According to news reports, Hernandez, owner of Professional Financial Services, told one of her clients that the client owed more than $70,000 in taxes. The alleged victim then made a check out to Hernandez, thinking the situation was taken care of, according to reports that added that months later the IRS contacted the client to say they never received the money and that she owed the government over $189,000 in back taxes.
Police reportedly said this is not the first time Hernandez had taken money from one of her clients, and that she is charged with theft of property.
St. Louis: Preparer Ricker Brooks and and his client Zondra Jones have been charged for their alleged preparation of false tax returns by overstating business expenses for the tax years 2009 and 2010.
Brooks owns Brooks Accounting Service; Jones owns Alliance In-Home Care Services, which provides home health care to individuals. The indictment alleges that after Jones reviewed the returns that Brooks prepared for her, she thought that the contract labor expense for her business was overstated. Although there was discussion between the two regarding the overstatement, they agreed to file the returns with the overstatement.
After the IRS investigated, Brooks prepared 1099s and check schedules that falsified Alliance payments to contract employees. Jones provided these false documents to the IRS.
Brooks was indicted by a federal grand jury on one felony count of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and two felony counts of aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false income tax return; Jones, of Florissant, Mo., was indicted on one felony count of conspiracy and two felony counts of income tax evasion.
Each count of conspiracy and income tax evasion carries a potential maximum of five years in prison or fines up to $250,000, or both; aiding in the preparation of a false income tax return carries a maximum of three years in prison or fines up to $250,000, or both.
Worcester, Mass.: Tax preparer and pastor Nydia Elicier, 56, has been sentenced to two years of probation, the first three months of which she is restricted by location monitoring, and 100 hours of community service for filing false returns with the IRS.
Elicier, owner of Cox Elicier Tax, is also prohibited from working as a preparer after being convicted this spring of four counts of aiding or assisting in the preparation of false returns.
In 2008, Elicier inflated client refunds with such false deductions as those typically reserved for educators, false gifts to charity, overinflated medical expenses and fraudulent unreimbursed employee expenses.
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