As tax season rolls around it’s no surprise to see tax refund check cashing schemes arising in the news.
Announced Monday was the filing of a criminal Information charging defendants Wilson Lau, and his wife, Kate Yuee Lau, for their participation in a check cashing scheme involving more than $5 million in fraudulently obtained tax refund checks and tax refund anticipation loan checks.
U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer stated, “It is time for tax refund scammers to realize that we will not allow them to steal taxpayers’ hard-earned money. Today’s charges are just the beginning. We now join forces with the IRS and Secret Service to combat tax refund fraud and identity theft. To this end, we will make the investigation and prosecution of these cases a top priority.”
IRS Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement, Steven Miller, states: “The IRS is aggressively pursuing those who steal others’ identities in order to file false returns… Our cooperative work with the U.S. Attorney’s Office will help protect taxpayers from being victimized by identity theft. The IRS is taking additional steps this tax season to further prevent, detect and resolve identity theft cases as soon as possible.”
IRS-CI Special Agent in Charge Jose Gonzalez stated, “We do recognize the impact this type of crime has on the American public and therefore I will continue to increase my resources, in conjunction with the U.S. Attorney, to investigate and bring to justice those groups of individuals who willingly utilize stolen identities to defraud the government. Make no mistake, the filing of a false claims and any financial transaction in furtherance of this crime will be investigated. Together with our law enforcement partners, we will aggressively investigate identity thieves and their accomplices and will hold them accountable for their actions” – Source.
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