Colorado Man Pleads Guilty in Tax Fraud Scheme
Received in excess of $2.6 million in fraudulent income tax refunds
NORFOLK, Va. – Mark J. Jones, Sr., 51, of Aurora, Colorado, pleaded guilty today to mail fraud and aggravated identity theft in connection with a scheme to defraud the Internal Revenue Service.
Dana J. Boente, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and Thomas J. Kelly, Special Agent in Charge, Washington, D.C. Field Office, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations; made the announcement after the plea was accepted by United States Senior District Judge Robert G. Doumar.
Jones waived indictment and was charged in a criminal information on April 13, 2015. Jones faces a maximum penalty of 42 years when he is sentenced on September 21, 2015.
In a statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, Jones’ scheme was discovered in 2013 after a local check cashing business noticed one of its employees had cashed over $2 million in U.S. Treasury checks. The employee of the check cashing business identified another co-conspirator as the individual who cashed the treasury checks and indicated he paid her $200 per check to cash the treasury checks in violation of the company’s policies. A subsequent IRS investigation determined that Jones, along with unidentified co-conspirators stole the personal identifying information of numerous people and filed at least 810 fraudulent income tax returns. As a result of these false returns, Jones and his co-conspirators received in excess of $2.6 million in fraudulent income tax refunds.
This case was investigated by the Criminal Investigations division of the Internal Revenue Service. Assistant United States Attorney Joseph L. Kosky is prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:14-cr-132.