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How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Ex-IRS Employee Sentenced for Trying to Bilk IRS Out of Millions of Dollars

By Allan Lengel

Note to Thomas W. Richardson: Get your cash elsewhere.

Richardson, a former IRS employee form Mansfield, Tex., was sentenced in Dallas last week to 8 years and 9 months for scheme in which he tried bilking the IRS out of millions of dollars to start a real estate business, the Justice Department said.

He was also ordered to pay $30,649 in restitution, the amount that was not recovered by the government.

U.S. District Judge Jane Boyle said at sentencing that Richardson used his knowledge as a former IRS employee to commit his crimes.

Authorities said that Richardson admitted that within a two-day period, April 15, 2006 to April 17, 2006, he filed 29 fraudulent 2005 individual income tax returns. Each federal income tax return claimed a refund of between $215,801 and $473,832. Richardson admitted that the refunds claimed by all 29 tax returns totaled $7,922,657.

Authorities alleged in each instance the Social Security number reported on the tax returns was assigned to individuals who had not given him authorization to file anything.

In the end the IRS paid out seven refunds totaling $1,865,401 between May 12, 2006 and May 19, 2006 before Richardson was caught.

All but $30,649 was recouped by the IRS.


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