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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Puerto Rico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Woman Sentenced To Prison For Defrauding The IRS

SAN JUAN, P.R. – Today, March 16, 2016, defendant Mariely Malavet-Rivera was sentenced by United States District Court Judge Francisco A. Besosa to serve a term of imprisonment of 34 months and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $103,632.10 for defrauding the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), announced Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez, United States.

Malavet-Rivera pled guilty on October 2, 2015, to twenty-four counts of wire fraud, one count of theft of public money, and one count of aggravated identity theft. These charges stemmed from a scheme utilized by Malavet-Rivera from 2010 until 2013 to submit false Federal tax returns seeking the additional child tax credit (ACTC) in order to obtain fraudulent tax refunds from the IRS via check and direct deposit. Personal identification information including individuals’ names, dates of birth, and social security numbers were utilized without the knowledge or consent of the individual in order to request and obtain the fraudulent tax refunds.

The false Federal tax returns contained defendant’s own postal address and bank account information so that the fraudulent refunds would be deposited via wire transfer to bank accounts Malavet-Rivera controlled and the physical checks would be mailed to her postal address. The defendant then used a fraudulent driver’s license or voter registration identification to cash the fraudulent refund checks through an intermediary company.

The fraudulent tax refund scheme had a total value of approximately $227,653.22.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Seth A. Erbe and investigated by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI).

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Identity Theft
Tax
Component(s): 
Updated March 16, 2016