- February 8, 2023
NORTH PORT — North Port residents James Dee Jaeger and Lora Anne Jaeger were sentenced to 18 months each in federal prison on federal tax fraud charges.
U.S. District Judge James D. Whittemore handed down the sentence yesterday, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney's office. The Jaegers both pleaded guilty April 21 to one count of filing a false tax refund claim.
According to court documents and evidence presented at sentencing, the Jaegers e-filed a joint federal income tax return with the IRS March 31, 2009. Prosecutors contended the fraudulent tax refund was consistent with a bogus theory that the federal government maintains secret accounts that U.S. citizens and taxpayers can access. Under this theory, according to the release, the taxpayer first files a false information return, such as a Form 1099, to justify a false refund claim on a corresponding tax return. In this case, the IRS didn't issue the fraudulent tax refunds claimed by the Jaegers.
In addition to their own fraudulent tax refund claim, authorities say the Jaegers advised and encouraged others to file similar fraudulent tax returns that claimed more than $2.5 million in refunds.