Tampa Man Sentenced To More Than 4 Years For Tax Fraud And Related Identity Theft
Tampa, FL - U.S. Attorney Robert E. O'Neill announces that U.S. District Judge Richard A. Lazzara today sentenced Roger Snells (25, Tampa) to 54 months in federal prison for tax fraud and aggravated identity theft. The court also ordered Snells to pay mandatory restitution of $26,164.61 to the U.S. Treasury. Snells entered a guilty plea before Judge Lazzara on September 2, 2011.
According to court documents, Snells admitted to being engaged in a tax fraud scheme in which he fraudulently used the names and identifying information of deceased individuals to electronically file fraudulent federal tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service. As a result, Snells received tax refunds to which he was not entitled. According to the plea agreement, law enforcement officials located more than 100 fraudulent tax returns on Snells’s laptop computer. The returns included ones that Snells had filed and others he intended to file with the IRS. The total amount of the false claims submitted by Snells to the IRS was $165,599.
This case was investigated by the United States Secret Service, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and the Tampa Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kelley C. Howard-Allen.
This case was prosecuted as part of Operation Rainmaker, a coordinated effort dedicated to combating the scheme of using stolen identities to file fraudulent federal income tax refund claims. The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida, the United States Secret Service, the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Tampa Police Department are working together on this joint investigative and enforcement effort in the Tampa Bay area.