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For Immediate Release
July 27, 2004
Media Contact:
Kevin Enright 410-576-6357

LAUREL WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO TAX FRAUD

Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today the guilty plea of Mari Ayn Sailer, 27, to filing 12 bogus State tax returns which sought in excess of $2.6 million in refunds. Ms. Sailer, of the 9000 block of 1st Avenue of Laurel, pled guilty before the Honorable Michael Loney, Anne Arundel County Circuit Court, to one count of tax perjury, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

According to a Statement of Facts read into the record at the guilty plea, the defendant electronically filed the 12 bogus returns in April and May, 2002, in the names of Mari Ayn Sailer, her brother Bruce Sailer, her then-boyfriend, Stephen Walters, and her father and mother William and Chanphen Sailer. William Sailer, the defendant’s father, passed away in 1999, and thus was not even alive when Ms. Sailer filed the two phony returns in his name. On those returns, she listed income of $898,654 from a non-existent company.

On the bogus return in her mother’s name, Ms. Sailer claimed income of $758,000 from Giant Food, when in fact, her mother did not work there. On the two bogus returns in the name of her brother, Ms. Sailer listed over $350,000 in income supposedly received from Giant Food. In fact, Bruce Sailer filed his own, legitimate, returns for the 2 years in question, and had nothing to do with the two bogus returns. On his legitimate returns, his employer was correctly listed as Point Technology and his income as under $20,000, not the $350,000 that Ms. Sailer listed on the bogus returns.

The defendant also filed four bogus returns in her own name, claiming that she had received income of $450,000 to $698,000 from companies for whom she never worked. She also filed three bogus returns in her then-boyfriend’s name, altering slightly the spelling of his name and providing non-existent social security numbers. On these returns, she again claimed incomes in the six figure range.

On all the bogus returns, she instructed that the refunds should be sent to one of two accounts she controlled, or a P. O. Box she had rented. The scheme was uncovered in time to deny the requested refunds; thus, the State did not suffer any loss.

Ms. Sailer had earlier this summer entered a guilty plea to federal tax fraud in the U. S. District Court for the District of Maryland. Sentencing in both the State and the federal cases will occur in August. The case was referred to the Criminal Investigations Division of the Attorney General’s Office by the Office of the Comptroller, and was investigated by the Maryland State Police.

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