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Press Release

Bedford woman sentenced to more than two years in prison for identity theft and tax crimes

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

A Bedford woman was sentenced to more than two years in prison and ordered to pay nearly $150,000 in restitution for an identity theft and tax fraud scheme, law enforcement officials announced.

Michelle Devine was sentenced to 28 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Dan Polster, and ordered to pay $149,616 in restitution. Devin, 44, pleaded guilty last year to one count of aggravated identity theft, four counts of theft of government property and one count of filing false claims for income tax refunds.

"This woman preyed on people's trust by posing as a legitimate tax preparer," said U.S Attorney Steven M. Dettelbach. "Instead, she abused that trust and stole money."

“Identity theft is a contemptible modern-day scourge,” said Guy A. Ficco, Acting Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation, Cincinnati Field Office.  “Individuals who commit refund fraud and identity theft of this magnitude and with this degree of trickery, dishonesty and deceit deserve to be punished to the fullest extent of the law.”

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney M. Kendra Klump following at investigation by the Internal Revenue Service -- Criminal Investigations.

Updated February 4, 2016

Identity Theft