Louisiana Return Preparer Sentenced to Seven Years in Prison for Filing Fraudulent Tax Returns
Violated Court Order Barring Her from Preparing Taxes for Clients Caused IRS More Than $6.9 Million in Losses
A Louisiana tax return preparer was sentenced to seven years in prison today for filing fraudulent returns, announced Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Acting U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans for the Eastern District of Louisiana.
According to documents filed with the court, Shawanda Nevers, aka Shawanda Hawkins, Shawanda Bryant, and Shawanda Johnson, 49, operated a series of businesses in the LaPlace area, including 3LJ’s Café Services & Sports Bar LLC and 3LJ’s Industrial Service Solutions LLC. Between 2011 and 2016, Nevers filed fraudulent income tax returns that included fake business losses, deductions and tax credits and sought refunds to which her clients were not entitled. Despite a federal judge permanently enjoining her from preparing federal tax returns in 2014, Nevers continued to file fraudulent returns.
In addition to the term of prison imposed, U.S. District Court Judge Susie Morgan ordered Nevers to serve one year of supervised release and to pay restitution to the IRS for $6,934,764 in losses that she caused. She also was ordered to pay $128,900 to the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Trust and $964 to the Social Security Administration. Nevers pleaded guilty to filing fraudulent tax returns in August.
Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Goldberg and Acting U.S. Attorney Evans commended special agents of IRS Criminal Investigation and the U.S. Secret Service, who conducted the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Hayden Brockett and Loan “Mimi” Nguyen, and Trial Attorney Grace Albinson of the Tax Division, who prosecuted this case.
Additional information about the Tax Division’s enforcement efforts can be found on the division’s website.