M’ville man admits ID theft to file for bogus tax refunds

HAMMOND | A judge has accepted a Merrillville man’s guilty plea to charges he stole individuals’ identities and used the information to falsely claim their federal tax returns, federal court records unsealed Monday show.

Hulian Terrell III, 40, was charged in March with five counts of false claims and five counts of identity theft, according to U.S. District Court records.

Terrell admitted he obtained the names, birth dates and Social Security numbers of various people by accessing websites operated by the Department of Correction and others, a plea agreement states.

Terrell stole the personal information between January and December 2009 and used it to file false claims for state and federal tax returns, court records say. He received tax refunds through U.S. mail and electronic wire transfers, according to the plea agreement.

Terrell received a total of $38,018 as a result of filing false claims for 10 individuals’ federal tax returns, court records show.

He has agreed to forfeit $9,140 to the federal government and pay restitution to his victims. The amount of restitution is to be determined at sentencing.

Terrell faces up to five years in prison on each of the false claims counts and up to 15 years in prison on each of the identity theft claims.

Magistrate Judge Paul Cherry has not yet scheduled a sentencing hearing.

Article source: http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/lake/hammond/m-ville-man-admits-id-theft-to-file-for-bogus/article_b8eb463a-710f-5ae2-a2b4-6043496f0652.html

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