United States Attorney in Tampa cracks down on tax fraud - WFLA News Channel 8

United States Attorney in Tampa cracks down on tax fraud

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United States Attorney Robert E. O'Neill announced that Carlista Hawls plead guilty Wednesday to one count of conspiracy to defraud the Internal Revenue Service, wire fraud, and theft of government funds and one count of aggravated identity theft. Hawls faces a maximum penalty of 5-years in federal prison.

According to the plea agreement, between January and August of 2012, Hawls along with others filed about 217 false and fraudulent federal income tax returns. Authorities say that in many of the filings, the individuals whose information appeared on the returns did not know about the activity. Authorities say that the 217 fraudulent returns claimed over $1.5 million in bogus tax refunds.

This case was investigated by the IRS Criminal Investigation Unit and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The Assistant United States Attorney Simon Gaugush prosecuted the case.

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