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Department of Justice
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Thursday, August 23, 2018

Rhode Island Tax Preparer Pleads Guilty to Forty-Four Counts of Filing Fraudulent Tax Returns

A West Warwick, Rhode Island tax preparer pleaded guilty today in the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island to 44 counts of filing fraudulent tax returns for clients, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman and U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts Andrew Lelling.

According to documents and information provided to the court, Raymond Petrarca owned and operated Stratus Financial Group, a tax preparation business in Warwick, Rhode Island. Petrarca admitted to falsifying 44 tax returns prepared for his clients between tax years 2010 and 2015, seeking refunds from the Internal Revenue Service to which his clients were not entitled. Petrarca admitted to falsifying the returns by including false and inflated deductions for home mortgage interest and charitable donations and false and inflated credits for purported home energy improvements.

Sentencing is scheduled for December 5, 2018. Petrarca faces a maximum sentence of three years in prison on each count, as well as a period of supervised release, restitution, and monetary penalties.

Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Zuckerman and U.S. Attorney Lelling thanked special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, who conducted the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Victor A. Wild and Trial Attorney Kimberly G. Ang of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting the case.

Financial Fraud
Press Release Number: 
Updated August 23, 2018