Maryland Tax Preparer, Anita Fortune Sentenced to Prison for Conspiring to Defraud the IRS
(STL.News) A Maryland tax return preparer was sentenced today to 30 months in prison for conspiracy to defraud the United States and aiding in the preparation of a false tax return.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Anita Fortune, 56, provided tax return preparation services under multiple business names, including Tax Terminatorz Inc. Due to a wire fraud conviction in 2007, Fortune was not eligible to have IRS e-filing privileges. Nevertheless, Fortune prepared and filed returns using IRS e-filing credentials belonging to two co-conspirators, who provided the credentials in exchange for fees and office space. For the tax years 2012 to 2018, Fortune and her associates fraudulently reduced their clients’ tax liabilities and increased their tax refunds by adding fictitious or inflated itemized deductions and business losses to the clients’ returns. The false returns included one that Fortune prepared for an undercover IRS agent. In total, Fortune caused a tax loss to the IRS of $189,748.
In addition to the term of imprisonment, U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm ordered Fortune to serve three years of supervised release and to pay approximately $189,748 in restitution to the United States.
Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Acting U.S. Attorney Jonathan F. Lenzner for the District of Maryland made the announcement.
The IRS Criminal Investigation investigated the case.
Trial Attorney Kathryn Sparks of the Tax Division and Assistant U.S. Attorney Leah Grossi of the District of Maryland prosecuted the case.