HAMMOND | A Gary man pleaded guilty to one count of defrauding the U.S. government on Thursday.
Under the plea agreement, Jerry D. Haymon Jr., 28, admitted he received $1,000 from a tax preparer for each fraudulent claim he helped him process. The money derived from the fraudulent claims involving Haymon totaled $20,249, court documents stated.
The tax preparer, Michael Nash, of Lake Station, allegedly inflated the earned income tax credits of tax customers. The illegal portion of the tax refund, unknown to the customer, would then be deposited into Haymon’s personal bank account, court records stated. Haymon and Nash would then split those funds.
Nash pleaded guilty last month to federal charges of conspiracy to defraud the government and aggravated identity theft.
In addition to using false information to increase the earned income tax credit to get a larger refund, he also said in the plea agreement he filed some tax returns without the knowledge of many clients.
Haymon faces up to 10 years in prison. The acceptance of Nash’s plea agreement will be considered at his sentencing before Chief Judge Philip P. Simon on Oct. 16.