Mauricio Warner, 37, was arraigned Tuesday on 16 counts of wire fraud, 16 counts of aggravated identity theft, 16 counts of filing false claims, and two counts of money laundering.
He allegedly filed more than 5,000 false tax returns using victims’ names and social security numbers in a scheme that lasted from about January 2011 until April 2012, prosecutors said. “Identity thieves are becoming more devious, creative, and conniving,” Veronica Hyman-Pillot, Special Agent in Charge, IRS-Criminal Investigation, said in the news release. “They steal our identities, steal government money, and prey upon innocent citizens.”
The victims were told they could get “stimulus payment” or “free government money” by giving out their identifying information, according to information presented in court. Warner is accused of using toll-free telephone numbers to solicit some of the information.
We have to be more careful people!