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Press Release

Newton Accountant Charged with Wire Fraud and Filing False Tax Return

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

BOSTON – A Newton man was charged today in federal court in Boston with wire fraud and filing a false tax return.

Jeffrey Kellem, 49, was charged by Information with four counts of wire fraud and one count of filing a false tax return. 

As alleged in charging documents, from December 2016 through February 2018, Kellem used his position an accountant for an elderly client and the estate of a deceased client to steal more than approximately $1.6 million for his own use. It is alleged that Kellem transferred his clients’ funds, without their authorization, to bank accounts he opened and controlled. 

Kellem also failed to report more than $500,000 in income from the funds he took on his tax returns. As a result, in 2017, Kellem avoided paying taxes totaling more than $150,000.

The charge of wire fraud carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release, a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater, and forfeiture. The charge of filing a false tax return carries a sentence of up to three years in prison, one year of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based on the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; and Kristina O’Connell, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation in Boston made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Sara Miron Bloom of Lelling’s Securities and Financial Fraud Unit is prosecuting the case. 

The details contained in the Information are allegations.  The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Updated August 5, 2019