DiAnte Eugene Yawn, 41, of Upper Marlboro pleaded guilty recently in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court to one count of theft scheme greater than $100,000, according to a press release from the Maryland Attorney General’s Office.
Judge Laura S. Ripken sentenced Yawn to five years incarceration, suspending all but six months, three years supervised probation upon release and prohibited Yawn from acting as a tax preparer while on probation. Comptroller Peter Franchot (D) has also placed a lien on his social security number to collect restitution, according to the release.
From 2014 to 2016, Yawn, who was not a registered tax preparer in Maryland, prepared and filed state income tax returns, for a fee, on behalf of numerous Maryland residents. Many of the tax returns Yawn filed on behalf of his clients included false information, which reduced their tax liabilities and improperly increased their state tax refunds collectively by approximately $100,000.
The returns contained false entries concerning business income and loss, dental and medical expenses, unreimbursed medical expenses, educational expenses, falsely reported tax preparation fees and a false W-2.
The case was investigated by Agent J.R. Hartzel of the Comptroller’s Field Enforcement Division and prosecuted by the Criminal Investigations Division of the Maryland Attorney General’s Office.