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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Louisiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Bastrop Woman Pleads Guilty to Filing False Tax Returns

MONROE, La. – United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced today that a Bastrop woman pleaded guilty on Tuesday, to filing false tax returns.

Stella Marie Dunlap, 37, of Bastrop, La., entered a conditional guilty plea before U.S. Magistrate Judge Karen L. Hayes, to one count of aiding and subscribing a false tax return. The plea will become final when accepted by U.S. District Judge Robert G. James. According to evidence presented at the guilty plea, Dunlap filed fraudulent Forms 1040 during the 2010 and 2011 tax filing seasons while employed as a tax preparer at Faster Tax Services in Bastrop. The returns contained fraudulent W-2 income information from fictitious companies, and the information was used to file Earned Income Tax Credit withholdings. As a result of the fraud, the IRS issued $104,401 in refunds to which taxpayers where not entitled. Dunlap received kickbacks from some of customers as part of the scheme.

Dunlap faces up to three years in prison, one year of supervised release, a $250,000 fine, and restitution.  A sentencing date of June 15, 2015 was set.

Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigations conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Seth D. Reeg is prosecuting the case.

Updated March 4, 2015