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Press Release

Area Tax Preparer Sentenced on Tax Charges

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

St. Louis, MO – Ricker Brooks was sentenced to 18 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution of $99,273 on charges involving his preparation of false tax returns. Brooks overstated business expenses of a client for the tax years 2009 and 2010.  Brooks owns Brooks Accounting Service, providing accounting and tax preparation services.  Zondra Jones owns Alliance In-Home Care Services, which provides home health care services to individuals.

According to court documents, after Jones reviewed the tax returns that Brooks prepared for her, she thought that the contract labor expense for her business was overstated.  Although there was discussion between the two of them regarding the overstatement, Jones and Brooks agreed to file the tax returns with the overstatement.  After the IRS began to investigate the returns, Brooks prepared false 1099 forms and check schedules which falsely represented payments made by Alliance In-Home Care Services to contract employees.  Jones provided these false documents to the IRS.

"Knowingly falsifying documents filed with the IRS is a crime,” said Karl Stiften, Special Agent in Charge of IRS Criminal Investigation.  “We hope today's sentence sends the strong message that tampering with the integrity of our nation's tax system will result in jail time."

Brooks, St. Louis County, pled guilty in May to one felony count of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and two felony counts of aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false income tax return. He appeared today for sentencing before United States District Judge Ronnie L. White. Brooks was taken into custody immediately following his sentencing.

Zondra Jones, Florissant, pled guilty last November to related charges. She was sentenced in May to probation for a term of three years and restitution of $99,273.

This case was investigated by IRS Criminal Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Steven Muchnick handled the case for the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Updated August 23, 2016