News and Press Releases

PORT ST LUCIE TAX RETURN PREPARER CHARGED IN TAX FRAUD SCHEME

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 11, 2011

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Kimberly A. Lappin, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, announced that defendant Tawayne Owens, a/k/a Tawane Owens, 32, of Port St. Lucie, was charged in a twenty-two count indictment with making and presenting fraudulent claims against the United States, in violation of 18 U.S.C. ยง 287.

According to the Indictment returned by a federal grand jury on March 31, 2011, Owens allegedly prepared and filed false U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns (Forms 1040) to the IRS on behalf of 22 individuals, claiming tax refunds which she knew were false.

If convicted, the defendant faces a possible maximum statutory term of imprisonment of 5 years on each count.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Parente.

An indictment is only an accusation, and defendant are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

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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.

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