A 52-year-old Middletown woman was sentenced Tuesday to spend more than five years in jail for her role in a scheme that attempted to defraud the Internal Revenue Service of more than $1.8 million.
Beverly Newton pleaded guilty in September to her involvement in a tax fraud ring in which she and others funneled the names and Social Security numbers of more than 180 people in Delaware and Pennsylvania to a third co-conspirator, who used the information to file false federal income tax returns between January 2011 and April 2013.
Newton also reportedly acted as a facilitator between those who provided the compromised identities and the person who filed the tax returns.
According to court records, the conspiracy ring received more than $800,000 in refunds. Another $1 million in refunds were still pending when the scheme was discovered, prosecutors said.
Newton received more than $300,000 for her role in the scheme.
In addition to being sentenced to 63 months in prison, Newton also was ordered by U.S. District Court Judge Leonard P. Stark to make full restitution.
"The sentencing of Beverly Newton again emphasizes that IRS Criminal Investigations, the United States Attorney's Office and its law enforcement partners will continue their aggressive pursuit of those who use fraudulent methods in an attempt to corrupt our nation's tax system," said Akeia Conner, the IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge. "Ms. Newton is being held accountable for her involvement in this elaborate criminal action."
Newton and Stephanie Patterson, a 41-year-old resident of Royersford, Pa., each were charged with mail fraud, aiding and abetting Social Security fraud and conspiring to file false claims, following an investigation by the IRS, the U.S. Postal Service, the Social Security Administration's Office of the Inspector General and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Patterson pleaded guilty to her involvement in the scheme in November and is scheduled to be sentenced in March.
Both women faced a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000 and three years of supervised probation.