South Bay Man Sentenced To More Than 2 Years In Prison For Stealing Government Money In Tax Fraud Scheme
Tampa, FL - U.S. District Judge Mary S. Scriven sentenced Larry Lee Northern, Jr. to 32 months in federal prison for theft of government funds and aggravated identity theft. Northern pleaded guilty on January 19, 2013.
According to court documents, on October 6, 2011, Northern was stopped by law enforcement for excessive speeding. During the stop, he was found to be in possession of illegal narcotics and various prepaid debit cards. Specifically, Northern possessed 15 prepaid debit cards in the names of various individuals, as well as 17 Wal-Mart Money Cards. In addition, Northern had internal corporate documents from a local healthcare company. The documents contained the personal identification information of numerous individuals. The individuals were later identified as current or former clients of a healthcare company. Northern also had $15,700.00 in cash.
Subsequent investigation determined that 12 of the 15 prepaid debit were credited with U.S. Treasury income tax refunds. The refunds on the prepaid cards, totaling $93,879.00, were obtained as a result of the filing of fraudulent income tax returns. The fraudulent returns were filed in the names of individuals who had not given Northern permission to file the returns for them. Of the 17 Wal-Mart Money Cards possessed by Northern, nine of the cards had a total of $65,463.00 loaded onto them. These were also determined to be the proceeds of fraudulently filed income tax returns.
This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation, the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General, and the United States Postal Inspection Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Amanda C. Kaiser.