Last Defendant Sentenced in Scheme to File Fraudulent Tax Returns from Herlong Prison
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 06, 2011|
SACRAMENTO, CA—United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced that today United States District Judge John A. Mendez sentenced Erik Troy Alexander, 44, to 27 months in prison for his role in a scheme to file fraudulent tax returns on behalf of other Herlong prisoners. The Judge specified that this prison sentence would run consecutively to the prison sentence the defendant is currently serving for a conviction in the Illinois federal court.
According to court documents, while Alexander was an inmate at the Herlong Federal Correctional Institution, he conspired with others to file false tax returns seeking refunds from the IRS. In order to portray the inmates as taxpayers, they made false W-2 forms using the names of real employers, but for whom the inmates had not worked. The IRS discovered the scheme and no refunds were paid. If the scheme had been successful, the conspirators would have obtained $93,950 from the IRS. Already sentenced in the scheme are co-defendants Scott Edward Whitney (seven years and three months in prison) and Juan Diego Paucar (four years and three months in prison).
This case was the product of a joint investigation by the IRS—Criminal Investigation, the FBI, and the Federal Bureau of Prisons at Herlong Federal Correctional Institution. Assistant United States Attorney Samantha S. Spangler prosecuted the case.
In sentencing Alexander, Judge Mendez commented, “The defendant learned nothing from his imprisonment and his prior imprisonment and is definitely a danger to the public.”