(UnitedVoice.com) – Former President Donald Trump is fighting a battle at the state level to keep his name on ballots. He’s been kicked off the Colorado and Maine primary ballots, and has appealed those decisions to the Supreme Court. Still, the fight continues.
Meanwhile, one of the men responsible for trying to keep him off of state ballots was recently arrested and charged with more than 30 crimes.
On January 10, the US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Texas announced the arrest of John Anthony Castro. The 40-year-old, who has filed multiple challenges to Trump’s ballot eligibility, was charged with more than 30 counts of aiding and assisting in the preparation and filing of fraudulent tax returns. Castro is one of the engineers of the plan to keep Trump off of ballots using the 14th Amendment’s insurrection clause.
Castro is the owner and operator of Castro & Company LLC. The company is a virtual tax preparation service with locations in Washington, DC, Mansfield, Texas, and Orlando, Florida. The federal indictment accuses Castro of devising a scam to create and submit false tax returns for taxpayers who weren’t aware of the scheme.
The indictment claims taxpayers hired Castro because he would promise refunds that were significantly higher than other tax preparers. He did so by reportedly creating fake deductions without the taxpayer’s knowledge. He then allegedly offered to split the additional money with many of the taxpayers.
In 2018, an undercover agent posed as a taxpayer and contacted Castro. The defendant is accused of refusing to meet with the agent in person unless he was paid a $5,000 retainer. He said he would help the agent prepare the returns. The defendant reportedly said he could estimate the tax return he might get from another firm and compare it to what the agent would get with him.
Castro allegedly filed the agent’s tax return on March 14, 2018, and claimed almost $30,000 in phony deductions. The agent received a refund of $6,007 and paid Castro $2,999 for his services. The agent only got $3,008 because the defendant reportedly said he would have only received $300 if he used the other tax preparer.
The defendant is accused of following similar patterns with dozens of others. The IRS paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in fraudulent claims. Castro is facing three years for each of the 33 counts against him, for a total of up to 99 years in federal prison.
The defendant is due back in court on January 17.
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