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Press Release

New Orleans Woman Sentenced for Making False Statements on Tax Returns

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Louisiana

U.S. Attorney Kenneth A. Polite announced that JULIE MERLIN ZANCO, age 44, of New Orleans, was sentenced today after previously pleading guilty to making false statements on income tax returns.

U.S. District Judge Carl J. Barbier sentenced ZANCO to serve three years probation and pay $9,838 in restitution.

According to the court documents, in or about May 2012, ZANCO’S husband learned that someone had opened a brokerage account in his name and used that account to acquire collateralized mortgage obligations (CMOs), a type of bond that bore value from interest generated upon its sale, by fraudulent means.  Even though they knew that the CMOs were not theirs, ZANCO and her husband gained control of the accounts and arranged for the interest proceeds of the CMOs to be diverted to other financial accounts under their control.  Between about March 18, 2013, and November 18, 2013, ZANCO used the funds, totaling approximately $54,980, to engage in a variety of financial transactions for her personal use, including purchasing a boat.  ZANCO failed to report the $54,980.00 as taxable income on her Tax Year 2013 tax return.  As a result of her failing to report this income on her tax return, she received an $838 refund, while she should have been obligated to pay approximately $9,000 in tax to the Internal Revenue Service.

U.S. Attorney Polite praised the work of the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigations and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney Jordan Ginsberg was in charge of the prosecution.

Updated March 5, 2015