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Press Release

Pittsburgh Man Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for Tax Fraud Scheme He Perpetrated from Prison

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

PITTSBURGH - A resident of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced in federal court to three years of imprisonment on his convictions for Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud and Tax Fraud, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.

United States District Judge Mark R. Hornak imposed the sentence on Sean Brooks, age 28, who is currently incarcerated. Judge Hornak also ordered that Brooks pay $250,000 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service, and that the three-year sentence run consecutively to the 12 to 24 year sentence Brooks is currently serving based on his conviction for involuntary manslaughter.

According to information presented to the court, Brooks, while incarcerated at various state prisons, engaged in a tax fraud scheme with other inmates and with other non-inmates. In summary, Brooks and other inmates filed tax returns on behalf of inmates and other individuals that falsely claimed tax refunds. The conspirators arranged for the Internal Revenue Service to send tax refund checks to addresses associated with members of the conspiracy who were not then incarcerated. The conspirators then forged the endorsements on the checks and deposited them into banks accounts. The conspirators then withdrew the funds associated with the fraudulently deposited refund checks and disbursed the money to members of the conspiracy. In total, the conspiracy involved the filing of hundreds of fraudulent tax returns and the issuance of hundreds of thousands of dollars of fraudulent refund checks.

Assistant United States Attorney Brendan T. Conway prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

United States Attorney Brady commended the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation, United States Postal Inspection Service and the Department of Homeland Security – Homeland Security Investigations, for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Brooks.

Updated January 9, 2018