Florida Return Preparers Plead Guilty to Using Stolen IDs to File Fraudulent Tax Returns
Caused Tax Loss of More than $550,000
Two Broward County, Florida tax return preparers pleaded guilty today to conspiring to file and filing fraudulent tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), announced Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Acting U.S. Attorney Benjamin G. Greenberg for the Southern District of Florida.
According to documents filed with the court, Luczor Fertilien, 39, and David Joseph, 37, owned two tax preparation businesses in Lauderhill, Florida: Imperial Taxation and Multi-Services Corp. and Aleluya Universal Accounting Services Inc. From approximately 2010 through 2016, Fertilien and Joseph filed fraudulent returns for their clients seeking refunds to which the clients were not entitled, by reporting fictitious business income, fraudulent education and fuel tax credits and claiming deceased individuals, whose identities were stolen, as dependents. They also filed returns in the names of individuals whose identities had been stolen. Fertilien and Joseph did not report the illegal proceeds they received from this scheme on their personal tax returns and each admitted to causing a tax loss of more than $550,000.
Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 22 before U.S. District Court Judge William P. Dimitrouleas. Fertilien and Joseph face a statutory maximum sentence of five years in prison on the conspiracy count and a maximum sentence of three years in prison on the false return count. The defendants also face a period of supervised release, restitution and monetary penalties.
Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Goldberg and Acting U.S. Attorney Greenberg thanked special agents of IRS Criminal Investigation and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, who conducted the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Neil Karadbil and Assistant Chief Greg Tortella of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting the case.
Additional information about the Tax Division’s enforcement efforts can be found on the division’s website.