Tyrone Devon Thompson, Aritha Currie, Julius Thompson, Tronda Thompson and Shonda Sneed were charged in an indictment by a federal grand jury in the Middle District of Georgia on a variety of counts stemming from a tax fraud scheme, the Justice Department and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced today. The 22-count indictment charges all five with conspiring to defraud the United States and filing false claims against the United States. The indictment, which was returned on May 11, 2012, was unsealed following the defendants’ arrests.
According to the indictment, all of the defendants conspired together to file false federal income tax returns that sought fraudulent refunds. The defendants directed the IRS to directly deposit the false refunds into the bank accounts of the defendants. The bank accounts received at least $280,000 in false tax refunds.
An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If convicted, all the defendants face a maximum potential sentence of five years in prison for the conspiracy charge and three years for each false claim count. All the defendants are also subject to fines and mandatory restitution if convicted.
Assistant Attorney General Kathryn Keneally of the Justice Department’s Tax Division commended the efforts of Special Agents of IRS - Criminal Investigation, who investigated the case, and Tax Division Trial Attorneys Charles Edgar and Justin Gelfand, who are prosecuting the case.