North Carolina man sent to prison for $2.5M tax fraud

July 13, 2022 GMT

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina man is going to prison following his conviction stemming from a $2.5 million tax fraud scheme based on the preparation and filing of false tax returns, according to federal prosecutors.

Court documents and statements said Joseph Octave, 49, of Charlotte was the leader of a multi-year, multimillion-dollar tax fraud scheme involving hundreds of fraudulent tax returns, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Octave owned and operated a tax preparation business in Charlotte.

From 2014 through 2019, Octave used his business to execute a scheme in which he directed his employees to prepare and file fraudulent tax returns, prosecutors said. He also trained his employees on how to create the fraudulent returns to avoid IRS detection and provided them with scripts and cheat sheets.

Also, Octave instructed his employees not to give clients copies of their own tax returns and not to share any details beyond the total refund amount, the news release said.

In addition to the term of imprisonment, a judge ordered Octave to serve two years of supervised release and to pay approximately $2.5 million in restitution.