Marching off to Prison

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12567971 - tax forms 1040,1120,1065 u s income tax return

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Band directors require special skills to help their students prepare for a variety of performances including, but not limited to parades, half-time shows at football games and concerts. (They generally have a music degree, are musically talented, have the patience and ability to teach students, are good fiscal managers since many do not get a very big budget to work with and they must be trustworthy, considering they are working with youth.) An article published by The Washington Times tells about a former Florida high school band director who took advantage of his position and skill set to steal the identities of former students and others to commit tax fraud to the tune of more than $129,000.

The article states that the former band director came under the scrutiny of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) after investigators noticed more than 400 suspicious tax returns were filed from his home address over three months. (What is even more noticeable is that the tax returns were seeking refunds of more than $750,000. Unfortunately, the IRS issued refunds worth more than $129,000.) A subsequent search of his apartment revealed personal identifying information for thousands of individuals. (That must have struck a note of discord with authorities.)

The 27-year-old pleaded guilty to aggravated identity theft and possession of unauthorized access devices. He is facing a mandatory two years in federal prison with the possibility of an additional 10-year term. He must also pay restitution of more than $129,000.

This fraudster obviously marched to the beat of a different drummer. (Instead of helping his talented students succeed, he used his unique set of skills to defraud his innocent victims who most likely had come to trust and admire him as a teacher.) This man’s prison sentence will probably still allow him to practice his marching although in straight lines behind other prisoners, but there’s a good chance he’ll be playing a sad tune for the foreseeable future.

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article titled, ”Ex-band Director Facing 2+ Years’ Prison in ID Theft Case,” published by The Washington Times on August 12, 2015.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) – A former school band director is facing a minimum of two years in federal prison after pleading guilty to identity theft and other charges.

Federal prosecutors say 27-year-old Delvis Demaine Rogers also agreed to pay restitution to the government of more than $129,000. Court documents show Rogers had thousands of stolen personal identities in his Hollywood apartment when authorities conducted a search in January 2014.

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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.