DOJ Seal Department of Justice  
United States Attorney John M. Bales
Eastern District of Texas

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE            CONTACT:  DAVILYN WALSTON
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 2010            PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
HTTP://WWW.USDOJ.GOV/USAO/txe             OFFICE: (409) 839-2538 DIRECT: (409) 981-7902

 

DALLAS TAX PREPARERS INDICTED IN THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS

            PLANO, Texas - U.S. Attorney John M. Bales announced today that three Dallas tax preparers have been indicted in connection with a tax fraud scheme in the Eastern District of Texas.

            ELTON A. GUTURA, 31, DOUGLAS ZINYAMA, 37, and TONDERAI K. CHARI, were indicted on Feb. 11, 2010 and charged in a tax fraud scheme.

            According to the indictment, from November 2006 to January 2007, Gutura, Zinyama, and Chari, all employed by Tax Expedia, are alleged to have falsified tax return information in approximately 318 tax returns in order to receive tax refund payments or increased tax refund payments in the amount of $805,181.  Gutura and Zinyama appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Don D. Bush on Feb. 17, 2010, and have been detained pending their arraignments.     

            All three defendants are charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States.  If convicted, they each face up to 5 years in federal prison.

            Additionally, Gutura is charged with nine counts of preparing a false tax return and Chari is charged with two counts of preparing a false tax return.  If convicted they face up to 3 years in federal prison for each conviction.

            An indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of either guilt or innocence.  All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

            This case is being prosecuted by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Shamoil T. Shipchandler.

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