Crime Watch: August 9, 2013

 
California Tax Return Preparer Arrested for Filing False Claims for Refunds with the IRS
 
Gabriela Sandra Ramirez-Quezada, co-owner of La Gabiota Income Tax (LGIT), was arraigned August 2 on charges of filing false claims before US District Judge Alicia G. Rosenberg following her arrest by IRS special agents.
 
A federal grand jury returned a twenty count indictment charging Ramirez with conspiracy to defraud the United States, filing false claims to the United States, and aiding and abetting.
 
The indictment alleges that Ramirez conspired to defraud the United States by filing federal income tax returns containing false claims for tax refunds. According to the indictment, Ramirez and her coconspirator created and filed false federal Forms 4852 (Substitute for Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement) and altered legitimate federal Forms W-2 (Wage and Tax Statement) claiming taxpayer/clients had more federal income taxes withheld from wages than was actually withheld and sometimes also claimed false dependents on the tax returns. As a result of the false information filed, the IRS issued false tax refunds for which the taxpayers were not entitled. Ramirez is alleged to have made more than $100,000 in false claims to the IRS.
 
In furtherance of her conspiracy, Ramirez and her coconspirator often used their home or business address on the fraudulent tax returns causing the refund checks to be mailed to the same addresses. Sometimes the refund checks were also endorsed by Ramirez and her coconspirator. In addition, Ramirez and her coconspirator failed to report their tax preparation income, fees they received from clients to prepare their federal tax returns, on their own federal income tax returns. 
 
If convicted of the charges, Ramirez faces a maximum sentence of ten years in federal prison for her role in the conspiracy and five years for each false claim charge. 
 
Source: US Attorney's Office - California
 
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Nevada Man Pleads Guilty to Filing a False Federal Income Tax Return
 
Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department's Tax Division Kathryn Keneally and US Attorney Daniel G. Bogden for the District of Nevada announced August 8 that Arthur Risser Jr. of Las Vegas pleaded guilty to filing a false personal tax return for 2008.
 
According to the plea agreement, Risser earned over $100,000 each year during 2006 through 2008 while employed as a large engine mechanic from 2006 to 2008, at Aggregate Industries Southern Nevada Paving Inc. and, during 2006 and 2007, at Las Vegas Paving Corporation. Risser intentionally understated his wages and listed inflated amounts for withheld taxes to increase his refund on his individual income tax returns for 2006, 2007, and 2008. According to the indictment, Risser earned over $300,000 from 2006 to 2008 but only reported $54,472 of income on his federal tax returns for those three years.
 
Risser faces a potential maximum prison term of three years and a maximum fine of $250,000. 
 
Source: US Department of Justice
 
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Utah Man Convicted of Tax Evasion
 
The Justice Department and the IRS announced August 7 that Jimmie Duane Ross of Lehi, Utah, formerly of Sevierville, Tennessee, was convicted of five counts of tax evasion following a jury trial in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee.
 
According to the indictment and evidence produced at trial, Ross won a monetary award of approximately $840,000 in 1999 after arbitration of an employment dispute with a former employer. Ross thereafter failed to pay the full amount of his income tax due and owing for 1999 and evaded the tax by filing a false mortgage on his residence, filing a false lien on his vehicle, dealing extensively in cash, and directing funds to an offshore account. In addition, from 2004 through 2007, Ross earned commission income for referring clients to a purported Nevis-based investment company and evaded his taxes by using nominees and other means.
 
On each of the five counts of conviction, Ross faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.
 
Source: US Department of Justice

 

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