Palm Beach Resident Sentenced in Identity Theft Tax Refund Fraud Scheme
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Donnell Young, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), announce that United States District Judge Jose E. Martinez sentenced Tia Lashonda Miller, 39, of West Palm Beach, to 70 months imprisonment, to be followed by 2 years of supervised release. .
Miller previously pled guilty to one count of unlawful possession of more than fifteen access devices, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1029(a)(3), and one count of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A(a)(1).
According to court documents, Miller was found in possession of notebooks containing stolen personal identifying information (PII) for 726 persons (including names, dates of birth and social security numbers), and 20 debit cards, eighteen of which were in the names of persons also found in the notebooks. The IRS determined that approximately 59 of the names and accompanying information were used to file fraudulent tax returns. During a court-authorized search of Miller’s home, agents found additional names and identifying information of identity theft victims, and some letters from the IRS addressed in other persons’ names. Miller admitted that she went to houses, collected mail and debit cards, and gave the envelopes and cards to two other individuals, whom Miller knew were filing fraudulent tax returns using the stolen PII.
Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of IRS-CI and the Martin County Sheriff’s Office. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Theodore Cooperstein.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.