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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Former Bay Area Resident Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy To File False Claims for Tax Refunds

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – Charmetra Urssery pleaded guilty yesterday to conspiracy to file a false tax returns, United States Attorney Melinda Haag and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, Special Agent in Charge José M. Martinez, announced.

According to the plea agreement, beginning in June 2008, Urssery engaged in a scheme to obtain fraudulent tax refunds. As part of her role in the scheme, Urssery gathered identities to use in false tax return filings that were submitted to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Urssery also used her bank account number to receive the fraudulent tax payments. When Urssery withdrew the money from her own bank account, she and others in the conspiracy would split the proceeds from the scheme. As part of her plea, Urssery agreed to repay $196,766 to the United States Treasury.

Urssery, 36, of Sacramento, was indicted on July 12, 2012. She pleaded guilty to the single charge in the Indictment – Conspiracy to File False Claims, in violation of 18 U.S.C § 286.

Urssery is scheduled to be sentenced on November 13, 2013. Urssery was charged along with Angela Pellette, who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to file false tax returns on June 12, 2013, and agreed to repay the United States $197,659. Pellette is scheduled for sentencing on September 18, 2013.

The maximum statutory penalty for each count of conspiracy to file false claim, in violation of 18 U.S.C § 286, is ten years in prison and a fine of $250,000. However, any sentence will be imposed by the court only after consideration of the U.S. sentencing guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.

Thomas Newman is the Assistant U.S. Attorney who is prosecuting this case. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the IRS-CI.