News and Press Releases

RETURN PREPARER PLEADS GUILTY TO
PREPARING FALSE TAX RETURN AND WIRE FRAUD

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 13, 2011

Bay City, Michigan - Carolyn Moore, 38, of Saginaw, Michigan, pled guilty yesterday before Judge Thomas L. Ludington to one count of willfully aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false tax return and one count of wire fraud for electronically transmitting a false tax return to the IRS, announced United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade. Moore and two co-defendants are awaiting trial on a separate charge of mail fraud conspiracy.

United States Attorney McQuade was joined in the announcement by Special Agent in Charge Erick Martinez, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division.

As part of the stipulated factual basis for her guilty pleas, Moore acknowledged that she operated her tax preparation business out of her home in Saginaw, Michigan for several years. The tax returns prepared by Moore between 2004 and 2006 for all of the customers listed in the indictment contained claims for tax deductions that Moore knew were false. Moore normally filed those falsified returns electronically. Moore fabricated the false deductions because she knew the deductions reduced her customers’ tax liability and/or increased the tax refunds paid to her clients. As a result, Moore developed a reputation in her community for being able to increase her customers’ refunds, and thereby experienced substantial growth in the volume of her tax preparation business. The increasing volume in Moore’s business created a corresponding increase in the tax preparation fees collected by Moore. As a result of Moore’s tax fraud scheme, the public experienced criminal tax losses of $260,465 between 2004 and 2006. In addition, the taxpayers listed in the indictment incurred assessments for penalties and interest on the taxes they underpaid on the falsified returns prepared by Moore.

As part of her plea agreement, Moore promised to pay restitution and the costs of prosecution to the IRS. The court may order Moore to pay a fine. The plea agreement also provides that, subject to contrary findings by the court, Moore’s prison sentence for her current convictions may be as long as, but will not be longer than, 27 months.

"During the 2010 tax filing year, IRS is stepping up its efforts to ensure paid tax return preparers are assisting clients appropriately and that refunds are only issued to taxpayers who are entitled to them," said Special Agent in Charge Erick Martinez. "So select your return preparer wisely, and remember that everybody loses when there is fraud involved."

United States Attorney McQuade thanked the IRS Criminal Investigation for the investigation of the case. The case is being prosecuted by the U. S. Attorney’s Office in Bay City, Michigan.

 

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