Authorities arrested eight people for impersonating IRS employees over the phone and telling victims wire them money for “back taxes.”
The people involved defrauded over 7,000 people of nearly $8.8 million, according to a statement from the Department of the Treasury, by convincing victims to wire them money using services like MoneyGram. The IRS impersonators would allegedly threaten arrest or use other forms of intimidation to get people to send the money, court documents said.
“Over the past three years, this scam has resulted in reported taxpayer losses of more than $55 million,” said J. Russell George, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), in the statement. “The scammers are relentless and so are we…Our investigators will not rest until we have brought those responsible for this scheme to justice.”
The arrests took place in Miami, Fl. on April 25, and the indictments took place in Arkansas and Mississippi courts. Two other people involved in the fraud were arrested last year.