FAIR LAWN, N.J. – A Fair Lawn tax preparer was sentenced Tuesday to 13 months in federal prison for getting more than $130,000 in returns for clients that they weren’t entitled to.
Because there's no parole in federal prison, Shirley Arias, 43, must serve nearly the entire term.
Arias – also known as Shirley Zambrano -- admitted in April that she filed tax returns on clients’ behalf using false information from 2012 through 2014 while she owned and operated Santos & Associates in Union City.
Arias “used a number of fraudulent practices, including falsely claiming deductions and fabricating educational credits,” Acting U.S. Attorney William E. Fitzpatrick said.
In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Judge Esther Salas sentenced Arias to one year of supervised release and ordered her to pay full restitution.
Fitzpatrick credited special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service for the investigation leading to Monday’s guilty plea.
He also thanked special agents with the U.S. Secret Service.
Handling the case for the government is Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason S. Gould.
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