North Carolina Return Preparer Convicted for Filing Fraudulent Returns
Falsely Claimed Earned Income Tax Credits to Increase Clients’ Refunds
A jury sitting in Greensboro, North Carolina, convicted a Durham, North Carolina, tax return preparer of conspiring to defraud the United States and preparing fraudulent tax returns for herself and her clients, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Matthew G.T. Martin for the Middle District of North Carolina.
According to public documents and information presented during the trial, Keesha Frye, 43, owned and operated KEF Professional Tax Services, a Durham tax preparation business. From 2012 through 2014, Frye and other KEF employees falsified their clients’ tax returns by including fake and inflated sources of income to qualify for and maximize the earned income tax credit and increase the refunds claimed on the returns. Frye also filed personal income tax returns that claimed bogus childcare expenses and business losses.
U.S. District Court Judge William L. Osteen Jr. scheduled sentencing for April 11. Frye faces a statutory maximum sentence of five years in prison for conspiracy and three years in prison for each charge of filing fraudulent returns. Frye also faces a period of supervised release, restitution and monetary penalties.
Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Zuckerman and U.S. Attorney Martin commended special agents of IRS Criminal Investigation, who conducted the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Anand Ramaswamy and Trial Attorney Nathan Brooks of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting the case.
Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the division’s website.