Josephine County Man Sentenced for Stealing More than $280,000 From Federal Government
Eugene, Ore. - Today, U.S. District Court Chief Judge Ann Aiken sentenced Zachary Stanley Rice, aka Brian Scot Rice, 39, of Josephine County, Oregon, to 30 months - imprisonment for theft of government property and making false statements in a passport application. Chief Judge Aiken also ordered Rice to pay $284,865.46 in restitution and serve three years of supervised release upon his release from incarceration.
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, obtained an additional U.S. passport in the name of Brian Scot Rice. Rice used the two identities to facilitate and avoid detection of a variety of fraud schemes related to debt elimination. Rice swindled several individuals out of thousands of dollars who sought his help to obtain debt relief. Rice did not help these people with debt relief, and, when the money dried up, Rice disappeared.
"Today's sentencing of Zachary Stanley Rice sends a strong message: Diplomatic Security is committed to making sure that those who commit visa and passport fraud face consequences for their criminal actions. Diplomatic Security's strong relationship with the U.S. Attorney's Office and other law enforcement agencies around the world continues to be essential in the pursuit of justice," said Dean Shear, Special Agent in Charge, San Francisco Field Office."
"I echo Special Agent in Charge Shear's comments. Fraudsters around the globe, especially those in my district, will be caught and brought to justice. This case represents a successful collective effort to bring a defendant to justice who time after time tried to cheat the system and take advantage of others," said U.S. Attorney S. Amanda Marshall.
This case was investigated by IRS Criminal Investigations and the U.S. Department of State Diplomatic Security Service and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott E. Bradford.