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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ANGELA DODGE

February 25, 2011

PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER
(713) 567-9388

FORMER EMPLOYEE OF TX AG’S CHILD SUPPORT DIVISION PLEADS GUILTY TO TAX FRAUD

(LAREDO, Texas) –  A former employee of the Texas Attorney General’s Child Support Division has been convicted of tax fraud charges, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations (IRS-CI) Special Agent in Charge Rodney E. Clarke announced today.

Eloisa Garcia Casso pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to defraud the United States as alleged in a second superseding Indictment returned by a Laredo federal grand jury on Feb. 1, 2011.  Casso entered her guilty plea before United States District Judge Diana Saldana, who has set sentencing for May 20, 2011. 

Casso, a former employee of the Texas Attorney General's Office Child Support Division, illegally obtained identifying information of applicants seeking state assistance during the course of her employment.  Casso, along with her co-conspirators, used this information to electronically file false Form 1040 tax returns on behalf of victims directing the fraudulent income tax refunds to bank accounts that she either owned or had access to.  Casso admitted to receiving or attempting to receive in excess of $80,000 during the course of the conspiracy which spanned from January 2001 through March 2005.  

Casso is the last of three defendants charged in this case to plead guilty.  Two co-conspirators, Jacqueline Velasquez and Rosa Herrera, pleaded guilty to similar charges before Judge Saldana on Dec. 7, 2010 and Feb. 17, 2011, respectively.  Each defendant now faces a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine at sentencing.

Like her co-defendants, Casso has been permitted to remain on bond pending sentencing.

The charges against Casso and her co-defendants is the result of an investigation conducted by the IRS-CI and the FBI with the cooperation of the Texas Attorney General’s Office.  Assistant U. S. Attorney Michael Elliot is prosecuting the case.

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