A former Independence tax preparer was sentenced for preparing approximately 1,000 false tax returns.
Monique Hernandez, 52, was sentenced to four years and six months in federal prison without parole for her role in a conspiracy that resulted in nearly $700,000 of fraudulent refunds.
Hernandez owned a tax preparation service in Independence named Complete Tax Service from 2013 to 2016 and operated it with her daughter, co-defendant Robyn Warburton, 33 of Los Angeles. Hernandez continued to prepare tax returns for the business after moving to Texas in 2015.
According to the office of the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, Hernandez and Warburton filed false claims for inflated or false deductions and employee business expenses on behalf of their clients and encouraged them to claim false gross receipts or sales on profit and loss forms in order to maximize earned income tax credit. The also encouraged clients to claim non-eligible children as dependents.
After an undercover IRS agent confirmed the fraudulent nature of the tax preparation business, federal agents executed a search warrant at the office of Complete Tax Service in 2014. According to the U.S. attorney’s office, after the search Hernandez and Warburton kept committing tax crimes for almost two more years, until January 2016, when the IRS revoked their tax preparation number.
A sentencing hearing for Warburton is scheduled for Aug. 30.