Accountant Arrested For Fraud Scheme, Tax Evasion and Money Laundering
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A 34-year-old former Corpus Christi man has taken into custody following the return of an indictment alleging a scheme to defraud his former employer of more than $160,000, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez.
A federal grand jury returned 20-count indictment against Brian Perez on Aug. 23,2017. He was taken into custody today in San Antonio where he will make his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Henry Bemporad. He is expected to then appear in Corpus Christi in the near future.
Perez is a certified public accountant and is charged with 18 counts of wire fraud and one count each of tax evasion and money laundering.
While working as a bookkeeper, Perez allegedly devised a scheme to defraud his employer by unlawfully transferring funds using the Electronic Federal Tax Payments System from the company’s bank account to his personal taxpayer withholding account at the IRS. The indictment alleges Perez then filed his U.S. Income Tax Return and requested a refund of the overpayment.
Through this scheme, Perez defrauded his employer of $162,775 between March 9, 2015, and Aug. 7, 2015, according to the charges.
In May 2015, Perez allegedly laundered approximately $59,000 by using a financial institution to engage in a monetary transaction when he transferred criminally-derived funds from his personal checking account to an investment account. The indictment also charges Perez with tax evasion for filing a tax return knowing he had received significantly more income than the amount stated in the return.
Each conviction of wire fraud carries a potential 20-year maximum prison sentence. If convicted of the wire fraud or tax evasion charges, he also faces up to an additional 10-years and three years, respectively, in federal prison. All charges also carry a possible $250,000 fine.
IRS-Criminal Investigation and the FBI investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert D. Thorpe Jr. is prosecuting the case.
An indictment or information is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.