May 26 2011
LOS ANGELES – A revenue agent with the Internal Revenue Service has been sentenced to 36 months in federal prison for filing fraudulent tax returns for himself and innocent relatives that claimed, among other things, bogus deductions for alimony and mortgage payments.
Albert Bront, 51, a former Santa Clarita resident, was sentenced late yesterday by United States District Judge Otis D. Wright II. In addition to the prison term, Judge Wright ordered Bront to pay $127,116.52 in restitution to the IRS.
Bront pleaded guilty in January to one count of subscribing to a false return and two counts of assisting others in subscribing to false tax returns. In his plea agreement, Bront admitted that he filed 15 false tax returns.
When he pleaded guilty, Bront pleaded guilty to a count involving his own fraudulent 2005 tax return, but also admitted filing fraudulent tax returns for the tax years 2003 through 2007 that claimed excessive deductions and failed to report certain income. Bront also pleaded guilty to two counts involving fraudulent tax returns he filed on behalf of relatives, without their knowledge. Bront further admitted that he stole large tax refunds that were the result of the fraudulent tax returns filed on behalf of the unknowing relatives.
In relation to his 2005 tax return, Bront falsely claimed approximately $16,819 in mortgage interest for a home on Birmingham Place in Santa Clarita, even though the property had been given to him by his mother. Bront also falsely claimed an approximately $12,000 deduction for “Alimony paid” and failed to report as income more than $10,000 he received when he stole a federal tax refund that was paid to a relative who was unaware of Bront’s fraudulent activity.
One of the fraudulent tax returns that Bront prepared for a relative fraudulently claimed that the relative paid property taxes and mortgage interest on the Birmingham property.
Bront was initially indicted in 2009 on a charge of threatening federal officers who were executing a search warrant at his home. As part of the plea agreement in this case, prosecutors agreed to dismiss that charge.
Bront, who has been on unpaid leave from the IRS since he was initially charged in 2009, was jailed on May 10, 2010 after he violated the terms of his pre-trial release.
In court papers, prosecutors argued that Bront should be sentenced to 30 months in prison for several reasons. “First, [Bront] is an IRS Revenue Agent who not only filed numerous false tax returns, but stole tax refunds from others. Second, [Bront] continued his illegal tax-related actions after getting caught by the IRS. Third, [Bront] threatened the federal officers who executed the search warrant at [his] home. Fourth, [Bront] violated his pretrial release conditions, which further demonstrates that, even after being indicted, he still had no respect for the law,” prosecutors wrote in their sentencing memorandum filed with the court.
The investigation into Bront was conducted by IRS – Criminal Investigation and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.
“IRS – Criminal Investigation is committed to protecting the integrity of our entire system of taxation, which includes ensuring that those employed to administer our tax laws, follow the tax law,” said Leslie P. DeMarco, Special Agent in Charge of IRS – Criminal Investigation, Los Angeles Field Office. “IRS revenue agents are bound by an oath and hold in a position of trust. Those officials that choose to knowingly and intentionally break the law, destroying and abusing public trust, will be held criminally accountable.”
CONTACT: Assistant United States Attorney Bayron T. Gilchrist