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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Oregon Woman Indicted in Tax Refund Fraud Scheme

A Portland, Oregon, resident was indicted by a federal grand jury yesterday for one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, 12 counts of wire fraud, 12 counts of filing false claims for tax refunds, four counts of theft of government funds and one count of aggravated identity theft, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General Caroline D. Ciraolo of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, Acting U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams for the District of Oregon and Special Agent in Charge Teri L. Alexander for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Criminal Investigation.

Danyelle Calcagno is alleged to have conspired with others to file fraudulent income tax returns with the IRS between January 2008 and April 2011.  Calcagno is alleged to have checked into Portland-area hotel rooms to use the hotels’ Internet connections to file at least 32 fraudulent federal income tax returns using the personal identifying information of third parties seeking refunds of at least $167,932.  According to the indictment, Calcagno received more than $25,000 in fraudulently procured refunds into her own bank account.  Additionally, Calcagno allegedly directed the IRS to deposit refunds onto stored-value debit cards issued in other people’s names. 

If convicted, Calcagno faces a statutory maximum sentence of 10 years in prison for the conspiracy charge, five years in prison for each count of filing false claims, 10 years in prison for each count of theft of government funds and 20 years in prison for each count of wire fraud.  Calcagno is subject to a mandatory two year sentence on the aggravated identity theft charge, which will run consecutive to any other term of imprisonment she receives. If convicted, Calcagno could be subject to fines, monetary penalties and mandatory restitution.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Ciraolo, Acting U.S. Attorney Williams and Special Agent in Charge Alexander thanked special agents of the IRS-Criminal Investigation’s Stolen Identity Refund Fraud Task Force, who investigated the case and Trial Attorney Leslie A. Goemaat of the Tax Division, who is prosecuting the case.

An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed.  The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the division’s website.

Press Release Number: 
Updated August 23, 2016