The U.S. Justice Department wants to shut down a Beaumont Tax preparer who allegedly schemed the federal government and her clients.

The United States has filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas seeking to bar Michelle Denise Johnston from owning or operating a tax return preparation business and preparing federal income tax returns for others, a USDOJ news release said.

The civil complaint filed against Johnston alleges that, since at least 2011, she has operated a tax preparation business in Beaumont under the name “Allen and Johnston Tax Service.”

According to the complaint, Johnston prepared and filed tax returns that understated her customers’ federal income tax liabilities by fabricating businesses and related business expenses; improperly inflating such expenses for existing businesses; and fabricating or improperly inflating itemized deductions for casualty losses and mortgage interest deductions.

The complaint further alleges that Johnston has engaged in a “refund-skimming” scheme that “double dips” her tax preparation fees.

The release said customers directly paid Johnston preparation fees ranging from $200 to $500, based on preparation of a “tentative income tax return” that showed a modest refund.

Johnston then took the tentative return…

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