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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Kent County Tax Return Preparer, Yashica Toshian Tucker, Pleads Guilty To Filing A False Claim Against The U.S. Government

          GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN — Grand Rapids resident Yashica Toshian Tucker, 40, pled guilty to making a false claim against the U.S. Government, U.S. Attorney Patrick A. Miles, Jr. announced today. U.S. Attorney Miles was joined in the announcement by Jarod J. Koopman, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation.

          Tucker was charged in April 2015 by a federal grand jury in a 10-count indictment that alleged she prepared and filed false federal tax refund claims between January 2011 and February 2013. The indictment alleged false claims totaling $71,606. Today, Tucker pled guilty to one of those counts before Chief U.S. District Judge Robert J. Jonker.

          According to a written plea agreement filed with the Court, Tucker claimed to be a knowledgeable and experienced tax return preparer who filed federal income tax returns for others for a fee. In pleading guilty, Tucker admitted preparing and filing a false tax return in 2011 on behalf of an individual tax filer. The return falsely stated that the filer earned more than $16,000 of income in 2010 and sought a refund of $7,436. Tucker knew that the claim to the Department of the Treasury was false and fraudulent because she made up the income amount. Tucker successfully obtained the fraudulent refund from the government from that claim, of which she received $1,000 as payment for her services. Tucker further admitted that this was not the only time she knowingly filed a false and fraudulent federal tax return claiming a refund on behalf of another person.

          Tucker will be sentenced by Chief Judge Jonker on November 3, 2015. The Court will determine the total amount of the loss to the government as a result of Tucker’s criminal activity. The maximum penalty for filing a false claim against the U.S. Government is imprisonment of not more than five years; a three-year period of supervised release; a fine of $250,000 or twice the gain or loss resulting from the offense, whichever is greater, and mandatory restitution to the government. The actual sentence will be determined by the Court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the advisory United States Sentencing Guidelines.

          Tucker has agreed to be permanently barred from preparing or filing federal tax returns for anyone other than herself.

          This case was investigated by Special Agents of Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher O’Connor is prosecuting the case.

END

Topic(s): 
Tax
Updated February 4, 2016