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Justice News

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

Monday, January 9, 2017

Cleveland Heights man sentenced to nearly six years in prison for identity theft and tax fraud

A Cleveland Heights man was sentenced to nearly six years in prison for identity theft and tax violations, said U.S. Attorney Carole S. Rendon and Troy N. Stemen, Acting Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation, Cincinnati Field Office.

Darryl E. Farmer, 45, was found guilty last year of one count of conspiracy to defraud, nine counts of false tax claims, eight counts of aiding in the preparation of false tax returns, two counts of wire fraud and two counts of aggravated identity theft.

U.S. District Judge John Adams sentenced Farmer to 70 months in prison and ordered him to pay $100,230 in restitution.

Farmer held himself out as a neighborhood tax preparer who paid recruiters a “referral fee” to provide him identifications and personal identifiers of others. Farmer used this information to file false tax returns, including claiming tax credits for businesses that did not exist, according to court documents.

Farmer also opened multiple personal and business bank accounts, which he controlled, in the names of these various people in order to deposit the refunds from the tax returns he filed, according to court documents.

Farmer falsely claimed more than $100,000 from the IRS between 2010 and 2012, according to court documents.

“This defendant stole identities and stole from taxpayers,” Rendon said. “This prison sentence is a reflection of how wantonly he broke the law.”

“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,” Stemen said. “IRS Criminal Investigation, along with the United States Attorney's Office, remain vigilant in identifying, investigating and prosecuting those individuals who seek to willfully defraud the United States Treasury and blatantly disregard the victims of their schemes.”


This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Bennett following an investigation by the IRS.

Identity Theft
Updated January 9, 2017