Alabama Prison Officers Jailed for Identity Theft

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The Montgomery Advertiser reports that two former Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC) officers were recently sentenced to prison for their involvement in a stolen identity tax refund (SIRF) scheme (h/t DataBreaches.net).

Bryant Thompson and Quincy Walton were convicted in January 2014 of conspiracy to defraud the United States. Thompson was also convicted of seven counts of wire fraud and seven counts of aggravated identity theft, and Walton was also convicted of one count of aggravated identity theft.

Thompson was sentenced to 10 years in prison, and Walton was sentenced to seven years in prison.

As a shift clerk at a state prison, Thompson had access to all ADOC inmates' personal information. He and his co-worker Walton used that data to file more than 180 fraudulent tax returns claiming over $750,000 in refunds.

Although the IRS detected many of those returns as fraudulent, improper refunds totaling $176,114 were issued.

In addition to their prison sentences, Thompson and Walton have been ordered to pay that amount in restitution.

The refunds were directed to debit cards and checks -- several of the checks were cashed at a local retail store by Walton's uncle, and by a local check casher. Thompson used the money to buy a BMW, and to purchase a new paint job and rims for his SUV.

When investigators tracked the IP addresses used to file the returns, one was tied directly to Thompson's home address, while others were connected to the two by circumstantial evidence.