Thursday, May 10, 2012

IRS Identity Theft leads to 25 year Sentence for Alabama Fraudsters

The news in Alabama today is that IDENTITY THEFT DOES NOT PAY. Veronica Dale of Montgomery, Alabama was sentenced to 334 months in prison and Alchico Grant of Lowndes County, Alabama was sentenced to 310 months in prison after the two participated in a scheme to file more than 500 fraudulent tax returns and steal from the IRS $3,741,908! The two will also have to pay $2.8 Million in restitution.

The sentences were announced on the main Department of Justice website with the title Leaders of Multi-million Dollar Fraud Ring That Used Stolen Information of Medicaid Recipients Each Sentenced to Over 25 Years in Prison

The charges brought against Veronica Dale include:

CR. NO: 2:10-CR-242-MEF (see see Indictment

18 USC § 286: Conspiracy to Defraud the Government
18 USC § 287: False, Fictitious or Fraudulent Claims
18 USC § 641: Theft of Government Public Money, Property or Records
18 USC § 1028A: Aggravated Identity Theft

CR. NO: 2:11-CR-69-MEF (see see Indictment

18 USC § 1343: Wire Fraud
18 USC § 1028A: Aggravated Identity Theft

In the first case, the defendants were:

Veronica Denise Dale
Alchico Dewayne Grant
Laquanta Grant
Isaac C. Dailey
Leroy Howard

In a superseding indictment filed for crimes that occurred after the first case was already underway, the defendants were:

Melinda Renae Clayton
Alchico Dewayne Grant
Veronica Denise Dale
Stephanie Adams
Valerie Byrd

Veronica owned and operated Dale's Tax Service, a tax preparation business located in Montgomery, Alabama. Looking back, it is likely that opening the Tax Service was just part of the plan to commit these crimes.

Veronica obtained Social Security numbers and names and used them to prepare and file false income tax returns and directed tax refunds to be deposited into accounts controlled by her and her co-defendants.

The bank accounts received at least $2.3 million in tax refunds.

1/21/2009 $4,990
2/14/2009 $5,124
3/6/2009 $7,352
3/15/2009 $10,688
3/15/2009 $10,031
3/15/2009 $10,332>
3/24/2009 $10,636
etc. etc. (the indictment lists 26 filings, but this happened well over 500 times!) Money was deposited into accounts opened in 2008, 2009, and 2010 at Regions Bank in Montgomery, Alabama and Woodforest Bank in Montgomery, Alabama, as well as Alabama State Employees Credit Union, MAX Credit Union. In 2011 additional accounts were opened at Bank of America where several more tax returns were received.

Veronica turned herself in to US Marshall Service on December 17, 2010. Here is the amazing part. AFTER TURNING HERSELF IN, and being released on bail pending trial, SHE KEPT STEALING MONEY FROM THE IRS!!!

The second case (2:11-CR-69-MEF) explains that between approximately January 2011 and April 2011, Dale conspired with Melinda Clayton and others to file an ADDITIONAL 155 fraudulent tax returns, to gather another $494,424 in tax refunds. THIS WAS AFTER DALE HAD ALREADY TURNED HERSELF IN because of the charges in the other case! She "caused to be stored at Clayton's residence thousands of names and social security numbers unlawfully obtained from EDS."

She pleaded guilty October 14, 2011.

The guilty plea (see see the Plea Agreementincludes the fact that "on counts 1,9,10,27 and 28, a 6-level enhancement is warranted because the Defendant's direct participation in the offense involved 250 or more victims.

The guilty plea explains that "Between June 2007 and February 2008, the Defendant worked as a temporary employee at EDS in Montgomery, Alabama. She "was able to and did wrongfully and illegally acquire Medicaid records which included the names, social security numbers, and dates of births of thousands of inviduals who received Medicaid benefits.

Between January 2009 and December 2010, she used these records stolen from EDS to file over 500 false tax returns.

308 of those tax retunrs deposited money into accounts of the Alabama State Employees Credit Union controlled by Betty Washington. The accounts received approximately $1,440,632.40 in false tax refunds.