LUMBERTON, N.C. (WBTW) — A Lumberton tax preparation business owner was arrested Wednesday on tax fraud charges, according to a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice.
Emmanuel Wesner Jean, who owns Jean Tax Services, was charged with aiding and assisting in the preparation and presentation of a false and fraudulent return, according to the DOJ.
“Tax fraud is a crime that victimizes all of us,” U.S. Attorney Michael Easley said in a statement. “Working closely with IRS Criminal Investigation, we will continue to investigate and prosecute these cases.”
Jean allegedly falsified federal income tax returns of at least two customers without their knowledge, according to the release. He allegedly claimed false tax information that limited liabilities and maximized refund amounts.
The customers were made aware of the credits when they were audited by the IRS and asked to repay the money, according to the release. He also allegedly falsified a return as part of an undercover IRS investigation.
Jean was arrested at Raleigh-Durham International Airport attempting to board a flight to Haiti, according to the release. He was ordered to remain in custody during further proceedings.
He faces up to 36 months in prison if he’s convicted.