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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Miami Man Sentenced In $1.85 Million Stolen Identity Tax Refund Scheme

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Jose A. Gonzalez, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division (IRS-CID), Miami Field Office, Paula Reid, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Secret Service, Miami Field Office, and Rafael P. Hernandez, Jr., Chief, North Miami Beach Police Department, announced that defendant Frandy Prophete, 34, of Miami, was sentenced today for his participation in a $1.85 million stolen identity tax refund scheme. Specifically, U.S. District Judge William P. Dimitrouleas sentenced Prophete to 61 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, and restitution in the amount of $1.85 million. Prophete previously pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to file false and fraudulent claims and another count of aggravated identity theft.

According to court documents, Prophete was charged in a multi-count indictment together with defendant Frantz Charles and other co-conspirators for participating in an identity theft tax refund scheme involving the use of the identities of over 900 deceased individuals to file fraudulent income tax returns. The tax refunds generated from the filing of these fraudulent returns were, in turn, deposited into bank accounts controlled by the defendants.

Defendant Charles previously pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to file false and fraudulent claims and one count of aggravated identity theft, and was sentenced on April 10, 2013, by Judge Dimitrouleas to 61 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, and payment of restitution.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of IRS-CID, the U.S. Secret Service, and the North Miami Beach Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jose A. Bonau.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

Updated March 12, 2015