Three Kansas City Tax Preparers Plead Guilty to False Tax Return Scheme

KANSAS CITY, MO (STL.News) Three Kansas City, Missouri, tax preparers have pleaded guilty in federal court to a scheme to file false tax returns.

Ananeia Derseh, 42, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs to aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false tax return. His brother and co-defendant, Azareia Derseh, 38, pleaded guilty on Thursday, Oct. 24, to the same offense.  Co-defendant Quashanda King, 38, of Kansas City, Missouri, pleaded guilty on Oct. 27, 2017, to the same offense.

Azareia Derseh owned and operated a tax preparation business in the Kansas City metropolitan area, under the names Instant Tax Service and Speedy Tax Service, at various locations. Ananiea was the manager in charge of one of the offices and King was the manager in charge of another office.

Ananeia and Azareia Derseh and King each admitted they prepared federal income tax returns for clients containing materially false and fraudulent items.  They prepared returns for at least 37 individuals resulting in at least 47 false income tax returns for tax years 2012, 2013, and 2014.

Ananeia and Azareia Derseh and King included higher fees to prepare clients’ returns than what the clients were originally quoted.  Often, a false Schedule C was included with clients’ returns to increase clients’ refunds.  Client refunds were used to pay the high fees, with the fees most often being deducted from clients’ refunds before the refund was issued to the client.  Most of the clients had between $669 and $1,437 in fees deducted from their refund.

According to court documents, the typical client who had their return prepared at Instant Tax Service was a very low wage earner, typically with under $3,000 inW-2 wages.  Further, the clients were unsophisticated in tax or financial matters.  When they walked into one of the two offices, they were assigned a preparer, who input their W-2 wages, dependents, and other identifying information into the appropriate field of their electronically filed returns.  There was no meaningful review of the completed return, and sometimes, the client did not get a copy of the return.

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