Valley man sentenced in fraudulent tax refund scheme - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Valley man sentenced in fraudulent tax refund scheme

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PHOENIX (CBS5) -

An Arizona man was sentenced to a little more than a year in jail for trying to defraud the government of $1.4 million with fraudulent tax returns.

Richard Paul Belles will spend 12 months and one day in federal prison after his sentencing by Judge Susan Bolton on March 18 as part of a plea agreement.

Belles pleaded guilty to one count of fraud and false statements Oct. 15, according to a U.S. Treasury Department news release.

According to the plea agreement, Belles filed his 2008 federal tax return with the Internal Revenue Service and falsely reported that the government had already withheld $513,000 in federal income tax, resulting in a requested refund of $363,831.

Belles came up with the $513,000 from a false Form 1099-OID that was submitted with the tax return and filled out by Belles, according to the news release.

Belles spent $149,649.73 of the $363,831 refund before the remaining amount was seized by the IRS, according to the Treasury Department.

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