Illinois Woman Pleads Guilty to Conspiring to Commit Wire Fraud and Aggravated Identity Theft
Lamesha Conley of Chicago, Illinois, pleaded guilty today to conspiracy and identity theft charges related to a scheme to obtain fraudulent tax refunds using stolen identity information, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division.
According to documents filed with the court, starting around January 2014, Conley provided more than 6,000 stolen identities to Dominique King and Roxann Gist for the purpose of filing fraudulent income tax returns. Between January 2014 and July 2015, King and Gist used those stolen identities to file fraudulent income tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) seeking more than $2.6 million in refunds. King and Gist directed that some of the refunds be mailed to Conley and other co-conspirators.
Conley is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 27, 2020. Conley faces a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for conspiracy to commit wire fraud and a two-year mandatory minimum sentence for aggravated identity theft, which will run consecutive to any other sentence imposed by the court. Conley also faces a period of supervised release, restitution, and monetary penalties.
King, Gist, and other co-defendants previously pleaded guilty for their roles in the scheme. King was sentenced to 30 months in prison and Gist was sentenced to 36 months in prison. They were ordered to pay $1,332,935 in restitution to the IRS.
Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Zuckerman commended special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, who conducted the investigation, and Trial Attorneys Timothy M. Russo and Lee F. Langston of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting this case. Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Zuckerman also thanked the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois for their substantial assistance in the case.
Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the Division's website.