by Chris Davis
The United States has filed a civil injunction lawsuit to shut down Mo’ Money Taxes, a Memphis- based tax preparation and return chain that markets iself as a unique alternative to other tax services.
From the press release:
The government suit alleges that the defendants promote a culture that favors volume and profits over accuracy and integrity, and creates an environment where fraudulent return preparation and tax-law violations flourish. According to the complaint, Mo’ Money Taxes’ managers, licensees and employees prepare fraudulent returns that cause their customers to incorrectly report their federal tax liabilities and underpay their taxes and charge customers bogus and unconscionably high fees.
At its peak Mo Money operated 300 offices in 18 states.
The United States accuses Mo’ Money Taxes and its owners, Markey Granberry and Derrick Robinson, and store manager Eumora Reese of creating and maintaining a business environment that encourages the preparation of fraudulent federal income tax returns.
According to the complaint, the defendants encourage Mo’ Money preparers to
· Falsely claim the earned-income credit;
· Claim improper filing status;
· Claim bogus education credits;
· Improperly prepare returns using paystubs rather than employer-issued W-2 forms;
· Fabricate bogus W-2 forms;
· File tax returns without customers’ consent;
· Sell false and deceptive loan products; and
· Charge deceptive and unconscionable fees.
The complaint estimates that tax losses resulting from fraudulent practices at Mo’ Money Taxes offices in Memphis, Atlanta, Richmond and Jackson exceeded $9-Million in 2011.