Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- A judge sentenced a former Richmond County Sheriff's Office deputy to 24 months in prison for stealing personal identification information to be used as part of a fraudulent tax refund scheme, according to a release.
Sean Street, 39, worked for the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office from 2007 through 2012. According to the evidence, during part of 2011 and 2012, Street used the personal identification information of more than 100 individuals to create a list with people's name, birthdate and social security number.
Street obtained the information through his work as a law enforcement officer and passed the list to an acquaintance knowing the information would be used to file fraudulent tax returns with the IRS, according to a release.
"Mr. Street is now walking a different beat on the way to federal prison," United States Attorney Edward J. Tarver said in a release.
In exchange, Street hoped to pocket at least $1,000 per stolen identity, according to the release. In total, individuals used the information from Street’s list to file 76 bogus tax returns which claimed $414,826 in false refunds. The IRS paid a total of $76,424 in refunds prior to the discovery of the fraud.
"This sentence is a message to others that there are consequences to stealing and using other individual's personal identifying information," stated Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation Veronica F. Hyman-Pillot in the release.
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