New York City, NY

Identity Theft, Filing False Tax Documents Lead to 5-Year Prison Sentence

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A New York man was sentenced to five years in prison after committing identity theft and filing false tax documents.

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According to an official release from the Department of Justice, Afolabi Ajelero of Springfield Gardens was employed at Kaybamz, a tax preparation firm, during each tax season from approximately 2012 through 2016.

Ajelero conspired with Kaybamz owner, Hakeem Bamgbala, and other co-conspirators to "prepare and file tax returns seeking fraudulent refunds in the names of individuals whose identities had been acquired unlawfully."

The Department of Justice specifically noted that one of Ajelero's roles was to use his Electronic Filing Identification Number (EFIN) on each fraudulent tax return. He also assisted with falsifying tax paperwork for a third-party auditing firm.

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The release states that Ajelero committed additional crimes related to another business venture, as well:

In addition to participating in the identity theft conspiracy, Ajelero also owned Mo-Betta Ventures, a transportation business that provided airport shuttle services in the New York City metropolitan area. From 2011 through 2016, Ajelero aided the filing of false corporate tax returns for Mo-Betta Ventures. Each of these returns included false items, including exaggerated fuel tax credits or deductions intended only for off-highway vehicles such as farm equipment.

In addition to his five-year prison term, U.S. District Judge William F. Kuntz ordered Ajelero to pay $45,000 in restitution to the United States.

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Bamgbala died prior to his sentencing, but previously "pleaded guilty to 18 counts of wire fraud, 22 counts of aggravated identity theft, one count of conspiring to commit aggravated identity theft, and one count of aiding and assisting the filing of a false tax return," according to the Department of Justice.

Another conspirator, Matthew Campbell, pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy to commit aggravated identity theft. His sentencing will take place on August 19, 2022.

What do you think about this intricate identity theft conspiracy?

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