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Justice News

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

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Plano Woman Sentenced To 30 Months In Federal Prison And Ordered To Pay Nearly $46,000 In Restitution In Tax Case

DALLAS — Harriet Mathita, who pleaded guilty in November 2012 to a superseding information charging conspiracy to defraud the U.S., through the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), by obtaining, and aiding to obtain, payments of false, fictitious and fraudulent claims, has been sentenced by U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade to 30 months in federal prison and ordered to pay $45,906 in restitution. Mathita has been in custody since her arrest in April 2012. Today’s announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.

In an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Dallas in April 2012, Mathita and her alleged co-conspirator, Mary Ngacha, were each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud. Ngacha was also charged with 10 counts of filing false claims against an agency of the U.S. and aiding and abetting. That indictment alleged that from January 2009 through December 2010, the women conspired to obtain substantial income tax refunds by submitting fraudulent income tax returns. The indictment also alleged that they were part of a conspiracy that obtained the names and social security numbers of persons on the Indiana sex offender registry, which was available to the public. According to the indictment, Ngacha allegedly filed false tax refunds claiming a total of nearly $3 million for tax years 2008 and 2009. Ngacha, who is on bond, is set for trial on June 10, 2013, before Judge Kinkeade.

According to the factual resume filed in the case, Mathita admitted that from December 2009 through June 2010, an individual, located in Dallas, mailed multiple federal tax returns to the IRS. These returns used stolen identification information and made false and fictitious claims for payment of tax refunds. Each return contained a false Form W-2 that reported significant, although fictitious, wages and withholding so as to result in a claim for a large tax refund. The returns directed the IRS to pay the refund either into a bank account or a physical address controlled by a conspirator.

The factual resume further states that three of these fraudulent tax returns directed the refund check to be delivered to the defendant’s address on Dartmouth Drive in Plano, Texas. In May 2010, a U.S. Treasury check in the amount of $45,206 was, in fact, delivered to Mathita’s address. Only one of the three fraudulent returns actually resulted in a refund check being mailed; the other refunds were not released by the IRS.

The investigation is being conducted by IRS-CI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Stokes is in charge of the prosecution.

Updated June 22, 2015