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Justice Department Asks Federal Court to Bar Illinois Woman
from Preparing Tax Returns for Others

Chicago Tax Preparer Allegedly Prepared Bogus Returns for Others

WASHINGTON - The Justice Department has filed a suit in federal court seeking to bar Bertha Steverson of Chicago from preparing federal income tax returns for others. The civil injunction suit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, alleges that Steverson, the owner of Berthaís Tax Service, prepares tax returns for customers that contain fictitious or inflated deductions and credits, in some cases based on fictitious businesses.

The governmentís suit alleges that Steverson has prepared an estimated 1,224 returns since 2004 that have caused an estimated loss to the U.S. Treasury of more than $3 million. The lawsuit asks the court to order Steverson to give the Justice Department a list of her customersí names, addresses, e-mail addresses, and Social Security numbers.

Since 2001 the Justice Department has obtained more than 220 injunctions to stop the promotion of tax fraud schemes and the preparation of fraudulent returns. More information about these cases is available on the Justice Department Web site at

More information about the Justice Departmentís Tax Division can be found at