Guatemalan sentenced for illegal tax refund scheme

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Federal prosecutors say a Guatemalan national has been sentenced in Nashville to 37 months in prison for his role in a fraudulent tax refund conspiracy that stole almost $650,000.

U.S. Attorney David Rivera announced Monday that 37-year-old Juan Castro-Castro, who once lived in Shelbyville, Kentucky, received the prison sentence after pleading guilty to conspiring with others to bring fraudulently acquired tax refunds to Nashville.

Authorities say testimony at the sentencing showed that Castro-Castro and others used false names to submit more than 100 fraudulent tax returns in Kentucky that claimed refunds were owed. The refund checks were mailed by the IRS to one of four Kentucky addresses.

Authorities say an accomplice in Nashville cashed the refund checks several times each week.

Prosecutors say Castro-Castro is in the country illegally.