A federal court in Memphis, Tenn., permanently barred the owners of Mo’ Money Taxes, Markey Granberry and Derrick Robinson, as well as a former Mo’ Money manager, Eumora Reese, from preparing tax returns for others and owning or operating a tax return preparation business, the Justice Department announced today. The civil injunction order, to which Granberry, Robinson and Reese agreed without admitting the allegations against them, was signed by Judge S. Thomas Anderson of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee.
The United States brought the civil injunction suit in April, seeking to shut down Mo’ Money Taxes, a Memphis-based tax-preparation chain that at one time operated as many as 300 offices in 18 states. The government complaint, which can be viewed at www.justice.gov/tax/2013/txdv13412.htm , alleged that Mo’ Money Taxes, its owners Granberry and Robinson and store manager Reese created and maintained a business environment that encouraged the preparation of fraudulent federal income tax returns. According to the complaint, Mo’ Money Taxes’ managers, licensees and employees prepared fraudulent returns that caused their customers to incorrectly report their federal tax liabilities and underpay their taxes. The complaint further alleged that defendants charged customers bogus and unconscionably high fees.
According to the complaint, Granberry and Robinson most recently used the business name Marquis Taxes and, along with Reese, also used the name Southern King Taxes. The complaint also alleges that Granberry and Robinson received fees for each tax return prepared by these businesses through Caymau Service Bureau LLC. The civil injunction order not only bars Granberry, Robinson and Reese from owning and operating these businesses, but also from managing, working in, controlling, licensing or franchising a tax return preparation business.
The complaint alleges that Granberry, Robinson and Reese encouraged Mo’ Money Taxes preparers to falsely claim the earned-income credit; claim improper filing status; claim bogus education credits, improperly prepare returns using paystubs rather than employer-issued W-2 forms; fabricate bogus W-2 forms; file tax returns without customers’ consent; sell false and deceptive loan products; and charge deceptive and unconscionable fees.
Return preparer fraud, claiming false income or expenses to secure larger refundable credits such as the earned-income credit, and identity theft are among the IRS’s “Dirty Dozen” Tax Scams for 2013, which can be viewed at www.irs.gov/uac/Newsroom/IRS-Releases-the-Dirty-Dozen-Tax-Scams-for-2013 .
“American taxpayers need to know they can rely on their tax preparers to prepare honest, accurate returns,” said Kathryn Keneally, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Tax Division. “The Internal Revenue Service and Justice Department are committed to strong enforcement action against tax preparers who fail to live up to that standard.”
In the past decade the Justice Department's Tax Division has obtained injunctions against hundreds of tax-return preparers and tax-fraud promoters. Information about these cases is available on the Justice Department website at www.justice.gov/tax/taxpress2013.htm. For more information about choosing a tax return preparer, see the IRS website www.irs.gov/uac/Tips-for-Choosing-a-Tax-Return-Preparer and the IRS YouTube Channel .