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Press Release

Judge Sentences New York Woman to 5 Years in Prison for Refund Fraud Scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Pennsylvania

Erie, Pa. – A former resident of Springfield Garden, New York has been sentenced in federal court to 60 months in jail and ordered to make restitution in the amount of $517,168.67 on her conviction of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, Acting United States Attorney Soo C. Song announced today.

United States District Judge David S. Cercone imposed the sentence on Bola Peters, 44.

According to information presented at her trial, Peters maintained multiple bank accounts which were used as repositories for fraudulently obtained federal tax refunds. After the fraudulently obtained refunds were deposited into accounts under her control, Peters would remove the funds, keep a portion for herself and remit the remainder of the refunds back to her co-conspirators. In addition, she was also in possession of numerous false identification documents. These documents matched the stolen identities listed on the fraudulent federal tax returns that generated the tax refunds deposited into the accounts Peters controlled. Other stolen identity documents found in Peters’ house matched the names on bank accounts Peters opened using stolen identities. Peters was also in possession of handwritten ledgers and lists containing hundreds of stolen identities that were used during the course of the conspiracy to file false federal tax returns.

Assistant United States Attorney Christian A. Trabold prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

Acting U.S. Attorney Song commended the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Peters.

Updated April 27, 2017