John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Douglas S. Martin, 53, of Bristol, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant in Hartford to 41 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for his role in an IRS impersonation scam that defrauded more than 500 victims in the United States and Canada.
An IRS impersonation scam is operated by individuals who falsely represent themselves as employees of the IRS to obtain money from victims. Typically, those executing the fraudulent scheme make unsolicited telephone calls to people and tell them that they are IRS agents or officers calling on behalf of the IRS. During the calls, the impersonator tells the call recipient that the recipient has an outstanding debt with the IRS that must be paid immediately.
The impersonator then threatens persons with either arrest or a lawsuit if they do not immediately settle the bogus IRS debt. Victims are instructed to wire money to individuals they believe are employees of the IRS in order to avoid the threatened action.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in October 2015, Nancy J. Frye, of Bristol, received phone calls and text messages from individuals who successfully recruited her to pick up money that was wired through MoneyGram and Western Union and to deposit the money into specific bank accounts.
Frye, in turn, recruited Martin and others to assist her in picking up wired funds from locations in central Connecticut. Frye then deposited the money that she collected into the bank accounts.
Between October 2015 and May 2016, Frye and others received approximately $588,000 in wired funds from approximately 547 victims. Martin participated in the scheme from approximately January 2016 to May 2016.
Judge Bryant ordered Martin to pay restitution in the amount of $279,881.13.
Frye and Martin were arrested on September 15, 2016. On May 18, 2017, Martin pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Frye, who pleaded guilty to the same charge on June 12, awaits sentencing.
Martin’s criminal history includes more than 40 state convictions.
Judge Bryant ordered Martin, who is released on a $25,000 bond, to report to prison on January 4, 2018.
Since October 2013, TIGTA has received reports of more than 1.9 million impersonation related calls with more than 10,400 victims reporting losses of over $56 million.
This matter is being investigated by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. The U.S. Attorney gratefully acknowledges the assistance provided by the Rocky Hill Police Department, Bristol Police Department, and New York State Department of Taxation and Finance.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter S. Jongbloed.
U.S. Attorney Durham stated that the investigation is ongoing and encouraged individuals who receive impersonation calls, including those who have been victimized by this scheme, to report the information at this link.
The Roundup currently has over 5,700 subscriptions and a local social media following of over 95,000 readers across multiple social media sites, apps, pages, and groups.
The Roundup is also a proud member of WordPress. This affiliation offers readers more news from FOX 61 and CBS Connecticut on The Roundup.
Latest Stories From Roundup Partner : FOX 61
BRIDGEPORT — The City of Bridgeport became the second city in the state to raise the age of sale of tobacco to 21-years-old. The vote passed 16-1. Bryte Johnson Chairman of the MATCH Coalition, said this is good news for Bridgeport and is a step forward in protecting kids from the dangers of tobacco. “It’s great news that Bridgeport is taking such a decisive step forward in protecting kids from the dangers of tobacco use in all forms,” said Bryte Johnson […]
Singer Chris Brown has been released from police custody and he won’t face any charges at this time, the Paris prosecutor’s office said. Brown and two others, who were not identified, were arrested Tuesday in Paris on allegations of aggravated rape and drug violations, a French judicial source told CNN. No charges have been filed against any of them, the prosecutor’s office said, but the investigation is ongoing. The US Embassy in Paris has declined to comment on Brown’s arrest. […]
Four aid volunteers are facing prison time after leaving food and water inside an Arizona national wildlife refuge where undocumented migrants have died trying to enter the United States. The volunteers, who are part of the No More Deaths ministry of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson, could be sentenced to up to six months in prison and fined up to $500 after they were convicted Friday by Federal Magistrate Bernardo Velasco. The volunteers — Natalie Hoffman, Oona Holcomb, Madeline […]
ANSONIA — Dozens of Ansonia residents are without a place to call home after city officials condemned their Main Street apartment building. Early Tuesday morning, the Ansonia Fire Department responded to a report of a burst pipe inside of Capitol Plaza Apartments, located right across the street from City Hall. When fire crews responded, they found multiple safety code violations, including extension cords connected to space heaters running down the hallways. In response, city officials condemned the building. Residents were […]