News and Press Releases

Saint Elmo Man Sentenced To Jail On False Tax Return Preparation Scheme Charge

July 24, 2012

United States Attorney Kenyen Brown announces that Artemius Smith, of Saint Elmo, Alabama, was sentenced to four months in jail or prison, six months home confinement and three years supervised release on his conviction of Federal tax criminal conspiracy. Artemius Smith was also ordered to pay $51,500 in restitution and to refrain from any involvement in the tax return preparation business.

The charges concern the filing of false tax returns through Smith’s Tax Service, a business jointly owned by Gerrode and Artemius Smith. The Smiths prepared and electronically filed tax returns which claimed the First Time Home Buyer’s Credit where the named taxpayer had not purchased a home in the year claimed and tax returns which fraudulently claimed the Earned Income Credit and other credits. The United States agreed that Artemius Smith had a lesser role in the conspiracy.

The case was investigated by agents of the Mobile office of Criminal Investigation, Internal Revenue Service. United States Attorney Kenyen R. Brown stated that the prosecution shows that the Department of Justice understands its duty to work to ensure that honest taxpayers are not taken advantage of, and to protect taxpayers from those who claim to be bona fide tax return preparers, but in reality prepare and file fraudulent returns. IRS Special Agent in Charge Rodney E. Clarke stated: “Taxpayers need to be cautious about selecting a return preparer because it is the taxpayers that are ultimately responsible for paying back any fraudulent refunds, along with interest and penalties.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Charles Baer and Gregory Bordenkircher on behalf of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Alabama.

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