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Josephine County Man Pleads Guilty to Stealing More than $280,000 from the Federal Government

September 14, 2012

Eugene, Ore. - Zachary Stanley Rice, aka Brian Scot Rice, 39, of Josephine County, Oregon, pleaded guilty to one count of theft of government property and one count of making a false statement in a passport application. In pleading guilty on September 12, 2012, Rice admitted to stealing more than $280,000 from the federal government through a tax return scam and to attempting to obtain a passport in the name of Brian Scot Rice.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Rice mailed the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) a fictitious money order for $364,315.62 that was allegedly drawn on an account at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and that fraudulently triggered the IRS to issue him a $284,865.46 refund when he filed his federal tax return. Additionally, as described in court records, Rice, after changing his name to Zachary Stanley Rice and obtaining a U.S. passport in that name, tried to obtain an additional U.S. passport in the name of Brian Scot Rice.

Sentencing is set for November 28, 2012, at 9 a.m. before Chief U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken. The maximum penalty for theft of government property and passport fraud is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine per count.

This case was investigated by IRS Criminal Investigations and the U.S. Department of State Diplomatic Security Service and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott E. Bradford.

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