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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

Monday, May 11, 2015

Dublin Resident Sentenced In False Tax Refund Scheme

OAKLAND – Kenya Brown was sentenced Friday, May 8, 2015, to twelve months in prison and ordered to pay $221,124 in restitution for her involvement in a false tax refund scheme, announced United States Attorney Melinda Haag and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, Special Agent in Charge José M. Martinez.

Brown, 31, of Dublin, Calif., pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to file a false claim.  According to the plea agreement, from April 2009 through June 2011, Brown conspired to file more than 139 false federal income tax returns with the IRS.  As part of the conspiracy, Brown electronically filed false returns from residences in San Leandro and Oakland.  The tax returns requested refunds based on fictitious W-2 forms.  To carry out the scheme, Brown instructed the IRS to wire the fraudulent refunds onto debit cards.  In total, Brown filed documents seeking in excess of $700,000 in false tax refunds. 
On January 8, 2015, Brown was charged in a nine count indictment with conspiracy to file false claims, wire fraud, theft of public money, and aggravated identity theft.  Brown pleaded guilty to conspiracy to file false claims.  At sentencing, Brown was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $221,124.

Brown is already in custody as a result of a prior conviction.  During the execution by the IRS of a search warrant at Brown’s home on July 28, 2011, she was found in possession of nearly two pounds of cocaine and a firearm.  Brown was charged with possession with the intent to distribute cocaine and being a felon in possession of a firearm.  On December 7, 2011, as the tax investigation continued, Brown was sentenced on the drug and weapons charges, and is serving a 60 month sentence on those charges.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Newman is prosecuting this case.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation.

Updated May 12, 2015