News and Press Releases

Polk County Man Sentenced To 7 Years For Tax Fraud

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 6, 2014

Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge Richard A. Lazzara today sentenced Norman V. Charlton (50, Lakeland) to 7 years in federal prison on tax fraud charges. The Court also ordered the forfeiture of $14,952 in U.S. currency that was seized from his residence on March 21, 2012, and entered a forfeiture money judgment in the amount of $325,886, the traceable proceeds of the fraud scheme.

On March 7, 2014, Charlton pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft in connection with using stolen names and social security numbers to electronically file fraudulent tax returns.

According to court documents, from August 2011 through June 4, 2012, Charlton and co-conspirators used stolen identities, including names, dates of birth, and social security numbers, to electronically file fraudulent tax returns and obtain tax refunds to which they were not entitled. A record of those filings was kept by Charlton in a detailed ledger, complete with names, email addresses, passwords, filing dates, times, and amounts. The fraudulent refunds were deposited onto reloadable debit cards in the names of others, and/or were disbursed in the form of U.S. Treasury checks and mailed to addresses controlled or directed by Charlton and others. Charlton and his co-conspirators used and directed the fraudulent tax refunds to obtain cash and goods for their own benefit and the benefit of others.

This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation and the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kelley Howard-Allen.

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