FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
TUESDAY, AUGUST 15, 2006
TDD (202) 514-1888
FEDERAL JUDGE STOPS TAX REFUND FRAUD BY TWO FLORIDA TAX RETURN PREPARERS
Orlando Couple’s Tax Fraud Scheme Targeted Haitian Immigrants in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A federal judge on August 8, 2006 permanently barred Jean-Marie Boucicaut and Marie Thelemarque of Orlando, Fla., and Boucicauts company, Tax Review Corporation, from preparing federal tax returns for others, the Justice Department announced today. The court also ordered Boucicaut and Thelemarque to return $772,449 plus interest to the United States that they fraudulently obtained by intercepting and cashing 593 tax refund checks of other persons.
Chief Judge William J. Zloch of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida in Miami found that the defendants filed amended income tax returns for persons without their authorization who did not know that the defendants had filed returns on their behalf. The government alleged that the defendants obtained tax information from copies of old tax returns given to them after the defendants offered to help taxpayers recover money allegedly owed to them by the IRS. The court stated that defendants used this information to prepare returns requesting tax refunds based on false credits and bogus deductions and directed the Internal Revenue Service to send the requested refund checks directly to them.
The Justice Department and the Internal Revenue Service are working vigorously to halt the preparation and filing of false and fraudulent income tax returns, said Eileen J. OConnor, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Departments Tax Division. People who prepare fraudulent refund claims are cheating honest taxpayers and often their customers, as well.
Previously in this civil action, the court had ordered the defendants to stop preparing federal tax returns for others while the lawsuit was ongoing. Pursuant to that order, Boucicaut and Thelemarque notified their customers of the order and provided the government a list identifying their customers and their customers addresses, phone numbers and taxpayer identification numbers.
More information about this case is available at http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/txdv05186.htm and http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/txdv06012.htm. Since 2001 the Justice Department has obtained injunctions against more than 200 return preparers and tax fraud promoters. Information about these cases is available at http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/taxpress2006.htm. Information on the Justice Departments Tax Division is available at http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/index.html.