|By Peter Hall, The Morning Call (Allentown, Pa.)|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
The scheme, as described in two court filings last week, capitalizes on a provision of the tax code under which residents of
The Peraltas and Antonios recognized that by using the stolen identities of Puerto Rican residents, who do not typically file tax returns with the
According to a 2013 audit by the U.S. Treasury inspector general's office, tax refund fraud around the country cost taxpayers about
Prosecutors allege the Peraltas and Antonios worked together with others not named in the court documents to obtain the identities, including the names, birth dates and
Using the stolen identities, the Peraltas and Antonios then prepared tax returns with
The Peraltas and Antonios had provided some of the addresses where the refund checks were mailed, and were paid
Prosecutors also allege that
The charges have a link to a widening mortgage fraud case also being prosecuted by the U.S. attorney's office in
The mortgage fraud case stems from a federal investigation of loans to buy
The buyer and loan officer in that case pleaded guilty in 2012, and the investigation led to the indictment in May of six additional people who worked at Madison Funding, including
In December, federal prosecutors charged three others in a related mortgage fraud case, including two
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