Madison Woman Pleads Guilty in Scheme that Caused $558,857 Fraudulent Income Tax Refund
BIRMINGHAM -- A Madison woman pleaded guilty today in federal court to theft of government property and money laundering as part of a scheme to obtain fraudulent tax refunds, including one for $558,857, announced U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance, IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Veronica Hyman-Pillot and FBI Special Agent in Charge Roger C. Stanton.
ANGELIQUE B. HARRIS, 49, entered her guilty plea before U.S. District Judge R. David Proctor. Through a related civil action, she forfeited a 2013 Lexus ES350 luxury automobile worth about $45,000 that she bought with some of the criminal proceeds. Harris' sentencing date has not been set.
A federal grand jury indicted Harris in October. She pleaded guilty to the indictment's charge that she, with the aid of others not named in the indictment, stole U.S. Treasury refunds between February 2013 and February 2014.
Harris also pleaded guilty to money laundering for using proceeds of a fraudulent October 2013 federal income tax refund of $558,857 to purchase the luxury Lexus from a Huntsville dealership. The IRS paid the refund on a tax return fraudulently filed in the name of a couple, identified in the indictment as "P. and A.O." The refund was deposited into an account Harris opened at a Huntsville bank, according to the indictment.
The maximum penalty for theft of government property and money laundering is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The IRS and FBI investigated the case, which Assistant U.S. Attorney Russell E. Penfield is prosecuting.