Salem man arrested on charges arising from fraudulent tax returns

 

Date: January 12, 2021

Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov

Boston, MA — Joleen Simpson, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigations in Boston announced that a Salem man was arrested today and charged in connection with a fraudulent tax return scheme.

Roosevelt Fernandez was charged by criminal complaint with one count of wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. Fernandez is scheduled to make an initial appearance today at 1:00 p.m. before Magistrate Judge David H. Hennessy.

According to the charging documents, Fernandez used the identities of various individuals to submit fraudulent state and federal tax returns. A number of these returns included fraudulent W-2 Forms purportedly issued by employers for whom the named taxpayer did not work. Various fraudulent refunds were deposited into an account in the name of Soluciones Multi Service, an entity controlled by Fernandez. It is further alleged that a May 2020 fraudulent Economic Income Payment – stimulus authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act ("CARES Act") – was deposited into this same account.

Fernandez was allegedly depicted on ATM surveillance footage depositing another fraudulent tax refund check into this account. The investigation uncovered approximately 40 fraudulent tax returns totaling requested refunds that exceed $600,000.

The charge of wire fraud provides for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. The charge of aggravated identity theft provides for a mandatory sentence of two years in prison, up to one year of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Internal Revenue Service's – Criminal Investigations conducted the investigation. The U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Massachusetts Department of Revenue provided valuable assistance with the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bill Abely, Chief of Lelling's Major Crimes Unit, is prosecuting the case.

The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.