Michael T. Baldwin Reports, 8/24/21
BUFFALO, N.Y. – U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Amanda L. Rickard, 41, of Caneadea, NY, who was convicted of aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false and fraudulent tax return, was sentenced to serve 36 months’ imprisonment by U.S. District Judge John L. Sinatra, Jr. Rickard was also ordered to pay $58,819 in restitution to the IRS and $19,772 in restitution to the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Charles M. Kruly, who handled the case, stated that between 2011 and 2018, the defendant prepared income tax returns for friends and acquaintances. During that time, Rickard reported materially false information on her clients’ individual income tax returns.
For example, in April 2018, the defendant prepared and filed a tax return for Client 1, which identified a child, Dependent 1, as Client 1’s nephew and dependent. However, Dependent 1 was not Client 1’s nephew, and Client 1 did not provide support for Dependent 1 during 2017. As a result of the false statement, Client 1 claimed an entitlement to a tax refund to which Client 1 was not entitled.
Between 2011 and 2018, Rickard prepared and filed 23 individual tax returns which identified dependents that the taxpayer was not entitled to claim. The defendant maintained a notebook identifying the names, dates of birth, and Social Security numbers of a number of children—including Dependent 1—whose parents had not claimed them as dependents on their own tax returns. Rickard then used this information to prepare the materially false tax returns on her clients’ behalf. During that same time period, the defendant also prepared and submitted individual tax returns on behalf of taxpayers who had not authorized her to do so.
The sentencing is the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Acting Special Agent-in-Charge Thomas Fattorusso, and the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance.