Former City of Miami Police Officer Sentenced in Identity Theft Tax Refund Fraud Scheme
|U.S. Attorney’s Office February 07, 2014|
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida; Michael B. Steinbach, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office; Manuel Orosa, Chief, City of Miami Police Department (MPD); and José A. Gonzalez, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), announce that Malinsky Bazile, 28, of North Miami Beach, was sentenced today for his participation in a stolen identity tax refund scheme. Bazile was sentenced to 144 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $140,000.
Bazile was convicted by a jury of one count of fraudulent use of unauthorized devices, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1029(a)(2); four counts of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A(a)(1); one count of exceeding authorized access to a protected computer, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1030(a)(4); and one count of possession of 15 or more unauthorized access devices, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1029(a)(3).
According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, the defendant operated an identity theft tax refund scheme from January 2012 to October 2012. During that period, the defendant, while employed as a city of Miami police officer, used his access to the Florida driver’s license database to steal the personal identity information of approximately 700 middle-aged women with common last names throughout the state of Florida. Using those identities, the defendant filed false and fraudulent tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service seeking refunds payable to pre-paid debit cards. The defendant was captured on multiple bank ATM videos withdrawing money from pre-paid debit cards loaded with fraudulent tax refund proceeds. FBI and MPD conducted a search at the defendant’s residence and found ledgers in a safe filled with hundreds of people’s identities and several pre-paid debit card containers. The defendant admitted to FBI and MPD that he made between $130,000 to $140,000 from the fraud scheme in 2011 and 2012.
Mr. Ferrer commended the FBI, MPD, and IRS-CI for their work on the case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael N. Berger and Peter Forand.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls.