Walla Walla man sentenced in tax fraud

Earnest J. Allen was ordered to serve 30 months in connection with false claims filed between 2000 and 2005.

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SPOKANE - A tax fraud scheme has netted a Walla Walla man 30 months in prison.

Earnest J. Allen, 43, was sentenced in federal court Friday. He will also serve three years of supervised released and was ordered to pay $50,121 in restitution, said Jon Dittman, a spokesman with the Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigation Division.

Allen pleaded guilty in September to conspiring to defraud the federal government by filing false income tax returns for refunds. In a plea agreement, the U.S. Attorney's Office dropped a companion charge of making a false claim against the U.S.

In his guilty plea, Allen admitted that he and another person conspired to submit about 34 false claims totaling $161,803 between 2000 and 2005. Of the total falsely claimed, the IRS actually issued refunds of $50,121, the amount Allen must repay.

Officials said stolen identities from various residences in Walla Walla were used to create the false tax returns claiming overpayment. Allen was arrested at his residence by IRS special agents in July.

Andy Porter can be reached at andyporter@wwub.com or 526-8318. Check out his blog at blogs.ublabs.org/randomthoughts.

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