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Press Release

Mississippi Tax Return Preparer Pleads Guilty to Obstructing the IRS and Filing False Returns

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Mississippi

WASHINGTON – A Gulfport, Mississippi tax return preparer pleaded guilty today to obstructing the internal revenue laws and aiding in the preparation of a false tax return, announced Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Acting U.S. Attorney Harold Brittain for the Southern District of Mississippi.


According to documents filed with the court and information presented at the plea hearing, Doris Kelley, 65, of Gulfport, Mississippi, operated a tax return preparation business from her home in Gulfport. Kelley instructed several of her clients, who owed income taxes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), to write payment checks directly to her rather than to the IRS. Kelley kept these funds for herself and used most of the money to gamble at local casinos. Typically, Kelley provided copies of accurate returns to her clients, but then did not file any return with the IRS. In some cases, she also filed false returns in her clients’ names without their knowledge. Kelley made hundreds of thousands of dollars from her scheme and caused a tax loss of more than $495,000.


The sentencing hearing is scheduled for July 7. Kelley faces a statutory maximum sentence of three years in prison on both counts. She also faces a term of supervised release, restitution and monetary penalties.


Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Goldberg and Acting U.S. Attorney Brittain commended special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, who conducted the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Stan Harris and Trial Attorney Nathan Brooks of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting this case.


Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the division’s website.

Updated April 10, 2017