South Florida

Tax filing season means tax fraud indictment season for 6 people

Jean Leroy Destine is one of the six South Floridians whose tax fraud indictment was released last week.
Jean Leroy Destine is one of the six South Floridians whose tax fraud indictment was released last week.

As tax filing season ended last week, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida unsealed a pair of indictments involving identity theft and tax fraud, each accusing three South Floridians of crimes.

An indictment from Feb. 9 accuses 42-year-old Israel Tassy (”Lou”), 31-year-old Evens Julien (”Chulo”) and 36-year-old Jean Leroy Destine (”Dolo”) of using identity theft of the living and dead to file 2,000 fraudulent tax returns from 2008 to 2015, which brought them $6.8 million.

Each faces charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States, wire fraud and aggravated identity theft. Tassy remains a fugitive while Julien and Destine were arrested last Wednesday. Destine was five months into his probation after being convicted of using a forged instrument and personal identification fraud.

An indictment from Feb. 23 hits Lauderhill tax preparers Luczor Fertilien (”Luc”), Frantz Petit-Dos and David Joseph, owners of Imperial Taxation and Multi-Services Corp and Aleluya Universal Accounting Services Inc., of a similar scheme from December 2009 to March 2016. Petit-Dos is still a fugitive. All three face conspiracy to defraud the United States and wire fraud charges. Fertilien and Petit-Dos face fraud with identity documents charges.

The indictment describes the Tassy-Julien-Destine scheme:

They would get others to put businesses, bank accounts and, most importantly, Electronic Filing Identification Numbers in their names. Still others would be used to file tax returns using stolen identification. Then, the prepaid debit cards, Refund Anticipation Loan or Refund Transfer checks would be diverted to the aforementioned accounts.

As the tax preparers’ indictments allege, the scheme varies slightly. The tax preparers got their own EFIN numbers and set up their own bank accounts, but also were issued Preparer Tax Identification Numbers. Then, it’s the same process — recruiting white-collar henchmen to prepare and file false tax returns, getting the returns and diverting the money to their bank accounts.

David J. Neal: 305-376-3559, @DavidJNeal