Florida man convicted of consumer fraud
TAMPA, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) – U.S. District Judge Virginia Hernandez Covington has sentenced Lori Owen, aka Lori Corrigan (50, vacation), to five years and three months in federal prison for conspiring to commit a bank , wire, and mail fraud. As part of his sentence, the Court also ordered restitution to the identified victims in the amount of $ 620,103 and pronounced a monetary judgment of $ 265,964, representing the proceeds of the fraud.
Owen pleaded guilty on April 19, 2021.
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According to court documents, Owen was indicted in December 2019 for his involvement in a telemarketing scam – primarily a tax impersonation fraud – which operated from around December 2014 to the end of 2016, and which defrauded more than 1 , 38 million dollars of victims in the United States. The conspirators, some of whom were overseas, extorted money from the victims by falsely representing them that they had financial obligations to the Internal Revenue Service, Canadian tax authorities or other entities. The conspirators then threatened the victims with arrest, prosecution or other legal consequences for their alleged debts and demanded that they pay the conspirators the money “owed”.
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Owen worked with others, including her ex-husband, David Owen, and her son, Andrew Corrigan, to collect the fraud proceeds on behalf of call centers overseas. They collected the profits in a variety of ways, including: opening bank accounts in which victims made cash deposits; receive wire transfers directly from conspirators; process prepaid debit cards that victims purchased through merchant accounts that Lori Owen opened and controlled; and receive cashier’s checks purchased by victims. The conspirators monitored victims’ payments to ensure payments were collected quickly, before a victim or law enforcement official could become aware of the fraud and attempt to stop the transaction.
David Owen and Andrew Corrigan have previously been charged and convicted of similar offenses for their role in this scheme. Owen was sentenced to 10 years and 10 months in federal prison and Corrigan was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison.
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“Impersonating the IRS, the Canada Revenue Agency or any other financial institution to attempt to fraudulently collect a debt is deplorable because it undermines the confidence that taxpayers have in these institutions,” said Brian Payne, agent. special in charge of IRS-CI. “The lengthy sentences of all the defendants in this investigation reflect the gravity of the charges and should be a clear warning of the consequences that await those who engage in these scams. “