Nick Lotito & Seth Kirschenbaum

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Serious potential penalties for woman accused of identity theft

With increasing technology and more frequent use of computers to conduct all types of business, it is easier for people, including Georgia residents, to make potentially unwise decisions that can have very serious penalties. Identity theft is a unique kind of crime because some people may find themselves implicated in identity theft crimes simply as a result of their level of access to databases and privileged information. Other people may fall victim to temptation and end up facing criminal charges.

A woman who worked as a financial technician in an IRS office is now facing several criminal charges, including identity theft, mail fraud and intentionally exceeding authorized access to IRS computers. According to the allegations, the woman, along with another co-defendant, used the IRS computers to obtain taxpayer information, get prepaid debit cards in the taxpayers' names and fund the cards with social security benefits belonging to the taxpayers. The woman's next court date is scheduled for mid-August.

The charges facing the woman in the story above are very serious and a criminal conviction for even one of the charges can have serious penalties. Mail fraud is taken very seriously by the U.S. government, with possible penalties of up to twenty years in prison. Jail time for the other charges ranges from two years to ten. In addition, there are possible fines of up to $250,000.

Because the punishments related to these kinds of charges can have dramatic and permanent effects on a person's life, including preventing them for obtaining future employment, it is important to fight these charges aggressively. There are many different aspects of a case that can contribute to its success, beginning with a detailed investigation of the alleged incriminating facts. In addition, knowing how to manipulate or negotiate the charges in light of possible sentences and the sentencing guidelines can help a defendant achieve a lesser punishment and more satisfactory result.

Source: AccountingToday, "IRS Employee Accused of Identity Theft," Michael Cohn, July 29, 2013

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Nick Lotito & Seth Kirschenbaum

Former Federal Prosecutors

918 Ponce de Leon Avenue, N.E. Atlanta, GA 30306 Phone: 404-692-5168 Fax: 404-872-1622 Atlanta Law Office Map