Southfield Tax Return Preparer Pleads Guilty
To Filing False Returns
Leo Joseph Perry Jr., 45, Southfield, Michigan pleaded guilty to one count of filing false federal income tax returns, United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced today.
McQuade was joined in the announcement by Special Agent in Charge Erick Martinez, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation.
According to court records, during January 2007 through February 2008, Perry prepared and filed with the IRS eleven false income tax returns for his Detroit and Southfield clients claiming over $56,000 in fraudulent refunds. Formerly trained as a tax return preparer for H&R Block, Perry worked under his own business LJP II, LLC located in Detroit, Michigan. Perry submitted fraudulent IRS Forms -1099 (Miscellaneous Income) and claimed the earned income tax credits on his clients' tax returns. Perry knew that the tax returns he prepared were false because his clients were not entitled to the earned income credits and he created the IRS-Forms 1099 claiming fictitious income. Perry received approximately $5,000 for each client who received the false credits. Further, Perry had the refund checks direct deposited into his personal bank account. Once the refunds were received, Perry only gave his clients half of the refund and kept the remaining amounts for himself.
"At the IRS, we cannot stress enough the importance of selecting a reputable tax return preparer. Fraudulent return preparers, like Perry, represent greed and often leave their clients responsible for the money they steal" said Carolyn Weber, Assistant Special Agent in Charge IRS-Criminal Investigation.
The preparation of false federal tax returns carries a maximum of five years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 per count. Sentencing is scheduled for November 29, 2012 at 1:00 p.m., in front of United States District Court Judge Julian Able Cook.
The investigation of this case was conducted by special agents of the Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Weier.