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Former IRS Employee Sentenced for Identity Theft

Joe Raedle, Getty Images

A former IRS employee will spend some time in prison after stealing people’s identities and collecting tax refunds for himself.

Thomas W. Richardson of Mansfield, Texas was sentenced Thursday to 105 months in prison and ordered to pay more than $30,000 in restitution following an August guilty plea to one count of theft of government property and one count of aggravated identity theft.

Richardson admitted that he caused, or personally filed 29 fraudulent 2005 individual income tax returns. The fraudulent returns claimed a refund of between $215,000 and $473,000. The refunds claimed by all of the returns totaled more than $7,922,000. He filed these returns within a two-day period between April 15th to April 17th, 2006.

The returns, all filed as married couples filing jointly, were filed with social security numbers, and most of those matched the names attached to the return. Richardson admitted that the tax returns were prepared without the approval of the 58 taxpayers listed. All of the refunds were paid into one of Richardson’s bank accounts.

The Internal Revenue Service paid out seven refunds totaling over $1,865,000. All but $30,649 was recovered.

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