Over $350,000 in Tax Refund Checks Were Passed
LAWFUEL – Press Release Service – Uriel Flores Ramos, 38, was sentenced to 18 months in prison today in Los Angeles by U.S. District Judge Audrey B. Collins for passing at least 135 U.S. Treasury checks with forged endorsements as part of a scheme to obtain fraudulent income tax refunds. Ramos was also ordered to pay restitution of $350,446.
Ramos pleaded guilty to one count of passing forged U.S. Treasury checks on March 20, 2006. Ramos’s wife, Lea Enriquez Flores, pleaded guilty on March 13, 2006 to conspiring with Ramos to defraud the IRS.
According Flores’s plea agreement, Ramos and Flores participated in a scheme to obtain fraudulent refunds by filing false income tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service. Flores admitted that she and Ramos prepared false tax returns, including false forms W-2 and falsely claimed dependants, for the individuals and would claim refunds from the IRS. On the returns that they prepared, Ramos and Flores used addresses of businesses and residences that they controlled or to which they had access in the city of Orange, California, as the addresses of the taxpayers.
Ramos admitted to passing at least $350,446.85 in tax refund checks with forged endorsements. Flores admitted that between 1998 and 2002, she conspired with Ramos to defraud the IRS and knowingly caused at least 78 fraudulent tax returns to filed, which falsely claimed at least $255,020.62 from the United States government.
Sentencing for Flores is still pending. She faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and fines of up to $250,000.
This case is the result of an investigation by IRS-Criminal Investigation.
CONTACT: Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra Brown
Chief, Tax Division of USAO, CDC