Lakeland man indicted on tax fraud - WFLA News Channel 8

Lakeland man indicted on tax fraud

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Mug shot of Norman Charlton Mug shot of Norman Charlton
 A 50-year-old Lakeland man has been indicted on charges involving tax fraud and victimizing the federal government and several people, including nursing home patients according to an indictment released by the Polk County Sheriff's Office on Wednesday.

Officials say Norman Charlton stole more than $400,000. Charlton is the father of Portia Charlton, a former Certified Nursing Assistant who was arrested by Polk County deputies in May for multiple counts of identity theft. She is still being held in the Polk County Jail on those charges.

"There seems to be no end to these criminals who steal identities and file fraudulent tax returns," said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd, "We urge everyone to guard your personal identification closely; crooks are actively looking to steal your identity and then defraud the taxpayers.”

The 13 count federal indictment charges Charlton with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, theft of government property and aggravated identity theft. He is also charged with four counts of wire fraud, four counts of theft of government property, and four counts of aggravated identity theft. The indictment is from the United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida.

Charlton was arrested on Sept. 29 in Hillsborough County. He was then transferred to the Pinellas County Jail, where he remains. According to Polk County investigators Charlton’s previous criminal history includes: five felony charges and one misdemeanor charge.

Deputies say the investigation into Charlton came about from a previous tax fraud investigation called the "Stop the Drop." That operation was conducted in 2012 and resulted in 25 arrests. Officials say a warrant for tax fraud was issued in January for Charlton.

Detectives say they expect to make more arrests related to the Charlton tax fraud case.

Other stories on tax fraud:

Tax fraud causes a seismic shift

Rampant tax fraud frustrates Tampa police

Tax fraud queen sentenced 

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