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California Woman Charged with Earned Income Credit Tax Fraud Scheme

Ms. Judi Ann Papagni, a tax preparer from Bakersfield, California, faces a 21-count indictment for presenting 54 fraudulent tax returns to the Internal Revenue Service. Ms. Papagni allegedly inflated the reported income in the individual tax returns so that the tax payers would receive undeserved Earned Income Credit payments.

While each tax return claimed a relatively modest refund, these refunds added up as more and more false tax returns were filed. According to the Central Valley Business Times, Ms. Papagni prepared individual tax returns claiming a total of $246,763 in fraudulent refunds over a period of four years.

If Ms. Papagni is found guilty, she could face as much as five years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each of the indictment’s 21 counts.

Waters & Kraus is a national firm with highly skilled lawyers practicing qui tam litigation in four offices, including Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Baltimore. Our attorneys have decades of experience successfully representing whistleblowers in a variety of fraud cases. Contact us or call our attorneys at 800.226.9880 to learn more about our practice and how we can assist.

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