Baker Woman Sentenced to Federal Prison for Aiding and Assisting in the Preparation and Presentation of False and Fraudulent Tax Returns
A federal grand jury recently returned a four-count indictment charging Michael D. Hopwood, Jr., age 39, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with wire fraud. Hopwood appeared for his arraignment and pled not guilty to the pending charges.
According to the indictment, Hopwood was entrusted to provide assistance with certain financial matters to a permanently disabled relative. After obtaining the victim’s personal identifiable information for the purpose of setting up automatic bill pay, Hopwood knowingly and fraudulently made unauthorized purchases, transfers, and withdrawals from the victim’s account for his personal benefit, without the victim’s knowledge, approval, or consent. This scheme was conducted from approximately November 2019 through approximately February 2020 and resulted in a loss of over $300,000.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Harley W. Ferguson and Lyman E. Thornton III.
NOTE: An indictment is an accusation by a grand jury. The defendant is presumed innocent until and unless adjudicated guilty at trial or through a guilty plea.