WASHINGTON – A Queens, New York return preparer pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to defraud the United States by filing false returns, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Richard Barker owned and operated a tax return preparation business under the names Tax Depot Inc. and KPS Kampant, Parkinson, Sinclair & Co. Inc. From 2011 through 2017, Barker conspired with other individuals to file returns for clients falsely reporting significant tax withholdings, in an effort to fraudulently inflate refunds from the IRS. Barker also admitted that he filed returns for himself, a coconspirator, and others, claiming more than $530,000 in fraudulent refunds from the IRS. In all, Barker caused a loss of at least $460,000 to the United States.
U.S. District Judge Eric R. Komitee will schedule sentencing a later date. At sentencing, Barker faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison. Barker also faces a period of supervised release, restitution, and monetary penalties.
Barker was previously charged in a January 2020 indictment alleging that Barker and two associates, Ricardo Andujar and Jose Andreu, conspired to defraud the United States. Andreu was also charged with filing false returns for himself, claiming approximately $182,000 in fraudulent refunds. Andreu’s case is pending. Andujar remains at large.
An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Zuckerman thanked special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation and Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, who conducted the investigation, and Trial Attorneys Ann Marie Cherry and Mark Kotila of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting the case.
Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the Division’s website.