Local tax preparer sentenced for fraud; admitted to causing $10M loss

A Central Texas tax preparer who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and to filing a false tax return and admitted causing a tax loss of more than $10 million is headed to federal prison. (File)
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) Waco tax return preparer Stacey Anderson, the owner of Anderson Professional Tax Services, who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and to filing a false tax return and admitted causing a tax loss of more than $10 million is headed to federal prison.

She was sentenced Wednesday to 60 months in prison followed by three years of supervised released and ordered to pay restitution of just more than $8.1 million.

Anderson and an employee, Janell Lightner, were named in an indictment in November 2018 that alleged they conspired to defraud the government by filing the false tax returns.

Lightner entered a guilty plea in August, admitting to causing a tax loss of more than $1.3 million.

She’s scheduled for sentencing on Dec. 5, and faces as much as five years in prison.

According to the indictment, “Anderson and Lightner conspired to defraud the United States and prepared clients’ tax returns, for years 2013 through 2017 that falsely claimed business losses, deductions and/or education tax credits, in order to fraudulently increase their tax refunds.”

It goes on to say the business, which was operated out of Anderson’s home, prepared tax returns for clients from Texas, Maryland and the District of Columbia.

The indictment also charges Anderson, individually, with filing false 2013 and 2014 tax returns for herself, claiming the same education credit that she falsely claimed on her clients’ returns, and that omitted income earned from her return preparation business.