Woman charged with aiding prisoner with tax fraud


HONOLULU (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a Hawaii woman helped a prison inmate file fraudulent tax returns that collected hundreds of thousand dollars in refunds to support a prison gang.

A complaint filed last week charges Melisa George with conspiracy to file false tax returns.

George is charged with assisting inmate Robin Lee by forwarding false tax returns, completing some of the forms and paying street people to sign them.

The 53-year-old Lee pleaded guilty July 30 to racketeering.

Prosecutors say he filed nearly 300 fraudulent tax returns from 2007 to 2012 and collected $353,810.

Prosecutors say the money helped a gang, “USO Family” buy drugs and bribe prison guards at Halawa Correctional Facility.

Lee will be sentenced in December. He faces a minimum of 20 years.

 

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