Tampa Woman Sentenced For Tax Fraud
Tampa, FL – U.S. District Judge James S. Moody, Jr. today sentenced Latosha Strong to 15 months in federal prison for filing false federal income tax returns in the names of deceased individuals. The Court also ordered her to pay $52,735.71 in restitution to the U.S. Treasury, which are traceable to proceeds of the offense. Strong pleaded guilty on December 11, 2015.
According to court documents, Strong, and others working with her, prepared and filed fraudulent tax returns using the stolen identities of at least 10 deceased individuals for the 2010 and 2011 tax years. The resulting tax refunds were directed to at least five different bank accounts in Strong’s name. The amount of false claims totaled $85,814, but due to federal seizure warrants and financial institution reclamations, the actual tax loss amounted to $52,735.71.
Analysis of information from the 10 deceased individuals’ returns shows that these conspirators used similar “formulas” to generate the fraudulent returns, including income, tax withholding, and interest income. In addition, several of the false returns claimed identical refund amounts.
Strong and others shared in the proceeds from the scheme. The monies were spent on a variety of retail items and services, and in transactions at a local casino.
This case was investigated by IRS Criminal Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mandy Riedel.