George Martinez, a Bureau Chief of the Questionable Refund Unit at the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department, pleaded guilty to wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and money laundering.
Martinez copied tax returns that had already been processed and altered information such as social security numbers and bank account numbers. He then changed the income and withholding amounts in order to increase the refund amounts. In some instances he created new tax returns using taxpayers’ information he had access to.
The fraud began in 2011 and continued through 2018, and generated $689,797 in refunds that were deposited into Martinez’ personal bank accounts.
Martinez faces a maximum of 32 years in prison, along with restitution.