Till Jail Do Us Part

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A married couple from Atlanta probably didn’t vow to commit crime together when they tied the knot, but they are about to be separated by a prison sentence they received for committing tax refund fraud. An article in the Atlanta Business Chronicle details the duo’s crime involving hundreds of innocent tax payers.

The story states that the 33-year-old husband and his 25-year-old wife ran a stolen identity refund fraud scheme for approximately three months during 2013. Throughout this short time, the couple used stolen identities and fake wage and withholding information to file fraudulent tax returns claiming more than $600,000 in tax refunds.

Once the fraudulent tax refunds were received, the husband had the refunds activated on prepaid debit cards. The couple used the cards at ATM machines in the Atlanta area. (Now there’s a shopping spree just waiting to happen.)

Both the husband and wife pleaded guilty to theft of public funds and aggravated identity fraud. The man was sentenced to prison for seven years and three months, while the wife received a sentence of two years in prison.

While they will both probably have a prison mate while serving out their time, they will not be able to share a cell as man and wife. Perhaps a little time apart from each other will help this couple to examine their individual and collective contributions to this selfish and deceitful crime against honest taxpayers.

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article titled, ”Atlanta Couple Gets Prison Time for Tax Fraud,” written by Phil W. Hudson and published in the Atlanta Business Chronicle on April 29, 2014.

ATLANTA – An Atlanta couple has been sentenced for their roles in a $600,000 income tax refund fraud scheme.

Justin Cody, 33, and his wife Aeshia Wilmore, 25, both of Atlanta, ran a stolen identity refund fraud scheme from as early as February 2013 to May 2013. They filed hundreds of fraudulent income tax returns using stolen identities, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

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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.