South Texas tax fraud: preparer convicted of filing fraudulent returns
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A local tax preparer has admitted to preparing false and fraudulent tax returns on behalf of Texas taxpayers, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.
Berlinda Luikens was the owner and operator of a tax preparation business known as the Tax Company in Corpus Christi.
Luikens admitted that between 2016 and 2020, she filed false and fraudulent tax returns for taxpayers. In those fraudulent returns, Luikens knowingly reported false business and farming losses and false charitable deductions in amounts she knew the taxpayers were not entitled to claim.
The fraudulent tax returns resulted in a loss of at least $446,301 to the United States.
“Tax season ends on April 15, but there is no end to our efforts to bring tax criminals to justice,” said Special Agent-in-Charge Ramsey E. Covington of IRS Criminal Investigation’s (IRS-CI) Houston Field Office. “Our special agents are the best in the business when it comes to solving financial crimes, which is why more than 90 percent of our cases result in convictions.”
U.S. District Judge Ramos will impose sentencing June 28. At that time, Luikens faces up to three years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine. She was permitted to remain on bond pending that hearing.
IRS – CI conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney John Marck is prosecuting the case.
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Updated March 30, 2023