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South Carolina woman sentenced to federal prison for tax and pandemic-related fraud

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A Sumter woman has been sentenced to federal prison for submitting false tax returns and a fraudulent Payroll Protection Plan loan to the United States government. 

Maggie Anne Boler, 61, of Sumter, was sentenced in relation to the schemes, which defrauded the U.S. out of roughly $180,000, according to a news release.

Senior U.S. District Judge Terry L. Wooten sentenced Boler to 30 months in prison. She was also ordered to repay $53,696 in restitution to the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Internal Revenue Service.

According to evidence presented during Boler’s trial and sentencing, Boler promised friends and family that she knew a secret way to get them large refunds from the IRS.

Boler used her bogus system to prepare tax returns for herself, her disabled brother, and others, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office. Boler would claim huge unsubstantiated withholdings on the returns, generating tax refunds of as much as $44,000. Some of Boler’s family members were unemployed and had no actual withholdings during the year, according to the release.  Once the fraudulent returns were discovered by the IRS, Boler’s friends and family were forced to repay the refunds and were burdened with additional penalties and fees.

Many of the relatives testified during the trial that Boler took a fee for preparing the returns and promised them that her methods were lawful and that she knew obscure rules that would get them large refunds, the release said.  

In addition to the tax fraud, Boler received a $20,000 PPP loan based on her fraudulent claims. Evidence produced during the trial showed that Boler took these PPP funds while also receiving thousands of dollars in South Carolina unemployment benefits during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Maggie-Anne Boler made false promises, defrauded American taxpayers, and stole from businesses in desperate need of support during the Covid-19 pandemic,” said U.S. Attorney Adair F. Boroughs.   “Our office is committed to vigorously prosecuting financial fraud in all its forms, and we encourage the public to ensure they are only working with reputable tax professionals this tax season.”

Senior United States District Judge Terry L. Wooten sentenced Boler to 30 months in prison. She was also ordered to repay $53,696 in restitution to the United States Small Business Administration and the IRS.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Cate Cardinale and T. DeWayne Pearson.


“The defendant in this case thought she had figured out a clever scheme to thwart the IRS and steal from American taxpayers,” said Donald “Trey” Eakins, IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge. “This sentencing is an important victory for America's taxpayers who play by the rules and have no tolerance for those who make up their own rules.”


Christina Lee Knauss is a contributing writer for SC Biz News.

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