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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Court Shuts Down Houston-Area Tax Return Preparer

Houston Man Allegedly Falsely Overstated Customers’ Itemized Deductions

A Houston, Texas, tax return preparer fraudulently lowered his clients’ federal income taxes by overstating the deductions they claimed on Schedule A (Itemized Deductions), according to a lawsuit filed by the Justice Department in May.  Now a federal court has barred the defendant in that case from preparing tax returns for others.

Charles Lee Harrison admitted to the allegations in the government’s complaint, including that he prevented his clients from realizing that their returns contained false items by not reviewing the returns with his clients and by sometimes not showing his clients the Schedule A that contained he false deductions.  Harrison also occasionally prepared returns that contained false credits and false Schedule F (Profit or Loss from Farming) losses.  Harrison did business under the names Harrison and Harrison Services and Harrison Tax & Legal Services in Grimes County and Harris County, Texas.  In 2014, Harrison pleaded guilty to willfully aiding and assisting in the preparation and presentation of a false tax return.

Return preparer fraud is one of the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) Dirty Dozen Tax Scams for 2016.  The IRS has some tips on their website for choosing a tax preparer and has launched a free directory of federal tax preparers.  In the past decade, the Tax Division has obtained injunctions against hundreds of unscrupulous tax preparers.  Information about these cases is available on the Justice Department’s website.  An alphabetical listing of persons enjoined from preparing returns and promoting tax schemes can be found on this page.  If you believe that one of the enjoined persons or businesses may be violating an injunction, please contact the Tax Division with details.

Press Release Number: 
Updated July 20, 2016