indictment charges tax preparer with fraud scheme
PHILADELPHIA - Crystal Graham, 42, of Philadelphia, was charged today by indictment with filing false claims with the United States through federal income tax returns she prepared for clients, announced United States Attorney Zane David Memeger. According to the indictment, Graham created bogus wage statements and other false financial information which she placed on tax returns that she prepared for individuals for the purpose of obtaining tax refunds in the names of the filers. The refunds were based on the filer’s alleged entitlement to the First Time Home Buyer’s Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit which are two tax credits that could result in a tax refund in 2008 even when the filer had little, if any, taxes withheld from income in that year.
According to the Indictment, Graham had her clients sign statements giving her the authority to deposit the clients’ refund checks into her savings account, or to have the refund checks placed on prepaid access devices. This gave Graham the ability to take a substantial portion of the fraudulent refunds before giving her clients the remainder.
If convicted, Graham faces a maximum possible statutory sentence of 55 years in prison, a fine of $2.75 million, a special assessment of $1,100, and three years of supervised release.
The case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Floyd J. Miller.
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, EASTERN DISTRICTof PENNSYLVANIA
Suite 1250, 615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106
PATTY HARTMAN, Media Contact, 215-861-8525