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PRESS RELEASE: Illinois Woman, Shameka Carr Charged in Stolen Identity Tax Fraud Scheme

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Illinois Woman Charged in Stolen Identity Tax Fraud Scheme

A Poplar Grove, Illinois resident was indicted by a federal grand jury today on six counts of mail fraud, six counts of aggravated identity theft and one count of access device fraud, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General Caroline D. Ciraolo of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Zachary T. Fardon of the Northern District of Illinois.

According to the indictment, Shameka Carr filed fraudulent tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the names of individuals whose identities she had stolen. Carr is alleged to have directed the IRS to issue the tax refunds requested on these fraudulent returns in the form of prepaid debit cards and U.S. Treasury checks, both of which were mailed to addresses she had access to in Rockford, Illinois, and surrounding areas. It is further alleged that Carr used the debit cards and U.S. Treasury checks for her personal benefit.

If convicted, Carr faces a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for each mail fraud count, 15 years in prison for the charge of access device fraud and a mandatory sentence of two years in prison for each count of aggravated identity theft, which would be in addition to any other term of imprisonment she receives. Carr also faces potential fines and restitution.

An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed. Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Ciraolo commended the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, IRS Criminal Investigation and the Boone County Sheriff’s Department, who investigated the case and Trial Attorneys Michael C. Boteler and John T. Mulcahy of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting the case.

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