Feds Change Procedures to Speed Tax Fraud Prosecutions

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013 @ 7:45PM

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After prodding from U.S. attorneys facing what one calls “a tsunami” of tax refund fraud, the Justice Department on Tuesday issued a directive designed to speed prosecutions.

U.S. Attorney Robert O’Neill said the directive represents “a seismic shift” in the way tax prosecutions are handled. No longer will federal prosecutors in Tampa have to await approval in Washington before arresting tax-refund fraud suspects.

Unlike other federal crimes, any federal prosecution involving tax violations must be cleared by the Justice Department’s Tax Division, a time-consuming process that has slowed officials’ response to an explosion in identity theft tax-refund fraud.

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