FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2009
TDD (202) 514-1888
ATLANTIC CITY TAX RETURN PREPARER SENTENCED TO JAIL FOR FRAUD
WASHINGTON – Eduardo Cortez, a resident of Mays Landing, N.J., was sentenced to 36 months incarceration and three years of supervised release by U.S. District Judge Noel L. Hillman in Camden, N.J., the Justice Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced today. According to his plea agreement, Cortez and his employees knowingly prepared false and fraudulent tax returns for customers that included false and inflated deductions, credits and adjustments. Cortez, who is also known as Eduardo Cortes, Edward Cortez, Eduardo Perez, and Eduardo Cottes, was also ordered to pay restitution of $442,734.
In August 2008, Cortez pleaded guilty to tax evasion and conspiracy to defraud the IRS. According to his plea agreement, Cortez defrauded the IRS by preparing false tax returns for customers of his business, Peoples Multiple Services, located in Atlantic City. Peoples also operated under the names People Tax Services, Perez Income Tax Services, People Multiple Services Inc., Peoples Multi Level Services and Cormel Inc.
According to his plea agreement, Cortez entered into an agreement with the IRS in 2000 stating that he owed over $114,000 in taxes, exclusive of interest and penalties, for calendar years 1993 through 1995. The plea agreement states that Cortez evaded these assessed taxes by taking various steps to conceal his assets and income from the IRS. His conduct, according to the plea agreement, included submitting false documents to the IRS which misrepresented his ability to pay his taxes and understated his net worth.
The plea agreement states that Cortez also used nominees to hide his income from the IRS. It further states that he had his business income paid to nominees and deposited into bank and brokerage accounts opened in the names of those nominees. Cortez also admitted in his plea agreement that he caused his personal expenses to be paid for by the nominees and caused tax returns to be filed in the names of nominees which falsely reported Cortezs business income and assets.
Rosalind Kengkart, a co-defendant of Cortez who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to impede the IRS in July 2008, is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Hillman on Feb. 18, 2009. According to her plea agreement, Kengkart, a resident of Atlantic City, prepared false tax returns for customers at Peoples that included false and inflated deductions, credits, and adjustments.
John A. DiCicco, Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Departments Tax Division, commended the IRS special agents who investigated the case, as well as Tax Division trial attorneys Shawn T. Noud and Mark F. Daly who prosecuted the case. More information about the Justice Departments Tax Division and its enforcement efforts is available at http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/.