2 Arizonans charged in federal income tax refund scheme - Tucson News Now

2 Arizonans charged in federal income tax refund scheme

NEW HAVEN, CT (CBS5) -

A federal grand jury in Connecticut has returned an 18-count indictment against two Arizona residents and a Connecticut man charging them with operating a fraudulent federal income tax refund scheme.

Kenya Malcom, 34, and Charles Ross, 40, both of Surprise, and Bernard Brantley, 43, of Waterbury, CT, were charged with various conspiracy, fraud, theft and identity theft offenses Thursday in New Haven, CT.

The indictment alleges that between November 2012 and May 2013, Malcolm, Brantley, Ross and others conspired to file false federal income tax returns in the names of individuals without the individuals' knowledge, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Connecticut.

As part of the scheme, Brantley, Ross and others advertised to victims that they were eligible for "Obama stimulus money" or "government funding" through a prepaid debit card, and then obtained personal identification information from the victims, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Malcolm, who operated a business in Arizona called Biggest Tax Refund, Inc., in Surprise, used the victims' names, dates of birth, and Social Security numbers to prepare and file false federal income tax returns, the attorney's office claimed.

Malcolm then directed tax refunds totaling more than $2.5 million to be deposited partially into bank accounts controlled by Malcolm, her family members, her employees, and Ross, and partially into bank accounts linked to prepaid debit cards that were sent to the victims, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

The indictment charges Malcolm, Brantley and Ross with one count of conspiracy, which carries a maximum prison term of five years, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

The indictment also charges each defendant with six counts of mail fraud and six counts of wire fraud, which carry a maximum prison term of 30 years on each count, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

The defendants are also charged with theft of public money, a charge that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years. Finally, Malcolm and Brantley are each charged with one count of aggravated identity theft, an offense that carries a mandatory consecutive two-year prison term, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

  • Local newsMore>>

  • breaking

    Missing vulnerable adult in Phoenix found safe

    Missing vulnerable adult in Phoenix found safe

    Sunday, November 19 2017 11:24 AM EST2017-11-19 16:24:48 GMT
    Carmelita Solis (Source: Arizona Department of Public Safety)Carmelita Solis (Source: Arizona Department of Public Safety)

    UPDATE: As of 9:21 a.m. Sunday-- Carmelita Barreras Solis, 68, has been located safe in the area of 1600 E. Indian School Road, officials from the Phoenix Police Department said. She has been reunited with her family.

    UPDATE: As of 9:21 a.m. Sunday-- Carmelita Barreras Solis, 68, has been located safe in the area of 1600 E. Indian School Road, officials from the Phoenix Police Department said. She has been reunited with her family.

  • Steve Bannon accepts award, draws protest in Tucson

    Steve Bannon accepts award, draws protest in Tucson

    Saturday, November 18 2017 11:17 PM EST2017-11-19 04:17:02 GMT
    Bannon accepted the award Saturday night from the Brian Terry Foundation (Source: Tucson News Now).Bannon accepted the award Saturday night from the Brian Terry Foundation (Source: Tucson News Now).

    A former member of President Trump’s Administration, Steve Bannon, was in Tucson on Saturday night to receive an award. But many Tucsonans stood in opposition to Bannon’s visit because of his views and ties to Breitbart News, a conservative network. Steve Bannon was the keynote speaker at the Brian Terry Foundation Courage Awards and Benefit Dinner at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort.

    A former member of President Trump’s Administration, Steve Bannon, was in Tucson on Saturday night to receive an award. But many Tucsonans stood in opposition to Bannon’s visit because of his views and ties to Breitbart News, a conservative network.

  • BEAR DOWN: Oregon too much for Wildcats in 48-28 loss

    BEAR DOWN: Oregon too much for Wildcats in 48-28 loss

    Saturday, November 18 2017 10:35 PM EST2017-11-19 03:35:58 GMT

    The Ducks rolled up 588 yards in beating the Wildcats by 20 points.

    The Ducks rolled up 588 yards in beating the Wildcats by 20 points.

Powered by Frankly