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Press Release

Alabama Man Pleads Guilty to Stealing Tax Refunds

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

Tarrish Tellis of Montgomery County, Ala., pleaded guilty today to conspiracy, theft of public funds and aggravated identity theft, announced Assistant Attorney General Kathryn Keneally of the Justice Department's Tax Division and U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Alabama George L. Beck Jr.

According to court documents, Tellis obtained and used the stolen means of identification of individuals, including their names, dates of birth and Social Security numbers, for the purpose of filing false federal income tax returns.  Tellis instructed his co-conspirators and others to provide him with bank account numbers for accounts at financial institutions that were used to receive the fraudulently obtained tax refunds.  Tellis used the account numbers and stolen means of identification to file false tax returns that claimed over $700,000 in false refunds.  As a result of his plea, Tellis faces a maximum sentence of 17 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000 per count.

This case was investigated by special agents of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) - Criminal Investigation.  Trial Attorneys Charles M. Edgar Jr. and Michael Boteler of the Justice Department’s Tax Division prosecuted the case.

Updated September 15, 2014

Press Release Number: 13-1133