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Fort Lee Tax Cheat Who Collected Nearly $1.5M Gets 3 Years In Fed Prison

Internal Revenue Service
Internal Revenue Service Photo Credit: CLIFFVIEW PILOT file photo

FORT LEE, N.J. – A Fort Lee mortgage broker who admitted collecting nearly $1.5 million in unentitled tax refunds from the government was sentenced to three years in federal prison.

Jose Crespo, who took a plea deal in September, filed returns that falsely listed income from bonds and fuel excise tax credits for several years, beginning in 2006, IRS Special Agent Jonathan D. Larsen said.

Crespo collected $652,478 the first year of the scheme for his Specialty Home Services company in Fort Lee, while taking in nearly $60,000 on his personal return, Larsen said.

The following two years, he collected $277,853 and $157,878, respectively, to which he wasn’t entitled, the special agent said.

“Between 2010 and 2011, Crespo also filed U.S. corporate income tax returns for various businesses in which he falsely claimed fuel excise tax credits that generated large income tax refunds,” he said.

“As we approach filing season, those who might consider intentionally filing false tax returns for their own personal gain should be aware of the extremely negative consequences,” Larsen said.

The investigation was conducted by agents with the IRS-Criminal Investigation’s Newark Field Office and the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Handling the case is Assistant U.S. Attorney Rahul Agarwal. 

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