Alabama Man Sentenced for Stolen Identity Refund Fraud
A Montgomery County, Alabama, resident was sentenced to prison today for his involvement in a stolen identity tax refund fraud (SIRF) scheme, Acting Assistant Attorney Caroline D. Ciraolo of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney George L. Beck Jr. of the Middle District of Alabama announced today.
Jerome Marcel Newton was sentenced to serve 48 months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release and was ordered to pay $147,102 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Newton previously pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. According to the superseding indictment and the plea agreement, Newton obtained the personal identifying information of others in various ways, including by using other individuals to collect identities or recruit people to provide their identities. Although Newton resided in Alabama, a number of the identities belonged to people living in Pittsburgh. Newton also obtained the identity information of prison inmates. Newton used the identities he obtained to file fraudulent tax returns, directing the refunds claimed on those returns into bank accounts or onto prepaid debit cards. Some of the prepaid debit cards were then mailed to addresses within the Middle District of Alabama.
Acting Assistant Attorney General Ciraolo and U.S. Attorney Beck Jr. commended special agents of the IRS-Criminal Investigation and officers of the Sheriff’s Office for Douglas County, Georgia, who investigated the case, as well as Trial Attorneys Jason H. Poole and Michael C. Boteler of the Tax Division and Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan S. Ross of the Middle District of Alabama, who are prosecuting the case.
Additional information about the Department’s Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found at www.justice.gov/tax.