Waterbury Tax Preparer Charged with Filing False Tax Returns
Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that on July 15, 2015, a federal grand jury in Hartford returned a six-count indictment charging MARCUS FOX, 41, of Waterbury, with filing false tax returns.
On July 23, 2015, FOX appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Joan G. Margolis in New Haven, entered a plea of not guilty and was released on a $100,000 bond.
The indictment alleges that FOX prepared tax returns for individuals in his community, many of whom were associated with a church he attended. From approximately 2009 through 2012, FOX prepared and filed more than 900 tax returns with the U.S. Internal Revenue Service on behalf of clients. A number of tax returns that FOX prepared contained false information, including false childcare credits, education credits, American opportunity credits, itemized deductions, education expenses, charitable contributions, unreimbursed employee business expenses, hobby expenses, and childcare costs. The false returns resulted in clients receiving substantial refunds to which they were not entitled. FOX typically received payment of between $200 and $350 for his tax preparation services.
The indictment further alleges that beginning in approximately 2011, FOX falsified a number of returns in a manner that allowed FOX to secure a greater payout for himself without his clients' knowledge. FOX would prepare a client tax return with significant falsified credits or expense deductions, which resulted in a fraudulent claim for a substantial refund. The tax return would be e-filed with the IRS with instructions to split payment of the large refund between the client and FOX, with FOX receiving a substantial portion of the payment. FOX would also prepare a second tax return, which he never filed, but instead provided to his client to hide the ongoing scheme.
The indictment charges FOX with six counts of filing a false tax return, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of three years and a fine of up to $250,000, on each count.
U.S. Attorney Daly stressed that an indictment is not evidence of guilt. Charges are only allegations, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
The case is assigned to Senior U.S. District Judge Alfred V. Covello in Hartford.
This matter is being investigated by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher W. Schmeisser.