States Attorney's Office District of Connecticut
|February 16, 2010||
TAX PREPARER WHO FILED FRAUDULENT RETURNS IS SENTENCED
Nora R. Dannehy, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that SOPHIA RUSSELL, 33, of Gloria Street, Windsor, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Robert N. Chatigny in Hartford to five years of probation for preparing fraudulent federal tax returns. On November 4, 2009, RUSSELL pleaded guilty to three counts of making false, fictitious and fraudulent claims to the Internal Revenue Service.
According to court documents and statements made in court, from January to May 2004, RUSSELL was an employee of Check Stop of Connecticut, LLC, and worked as a tax preparer in a basement level office of the business’s location at 190 Farmington Avenue in Hartford. RUSSELL has admitted that she prepared fraudulent tax returns and filed them electronically with the IRS, causing bogus refunds to be issued. Included in some of the returns were improper deductions for dependents, and fraudulent child care credits, child tax credits, earned income credits and educational credits.
RUSSELL attempted to make $21,888 in claims through her fraudulent tax preparation. As as a result of the submission of the false tax returns, the U.S. Treasury paid a total of $13,587, and the Household Bank (now HSBC Bank), which granted anticipation loans based on claimed refunds, paid $1,319.
Today, Judge Chatigny ordered RUSSELL to pay restitution in the amount of $14,906.
This matter was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney James G. Genco.
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