Capital Region News

 

Clever Crook Finally Caught

Already in a jail cell, a man who goes by two names, pled guilty to using multiple social security numbers to steal $4,530 in New York State Tax Refunds, according to the Albany County District Attorney’s office.

Steven Augustine, aka Kavin Santos, sent in several Social Security numbers on several state tax forms to try and claim thousands of dollars in refunds, authorities said. The phony filings were all done while he was already behind bars and authorities say the refunds were deposited into his commissary account.

Augustine, 26, pled guilty to one Count of Grand Larceny (3rd Degree, a Class-D Felony), before Judge Peter A. Lynch Monday morning in Albany County Court. Augustine faces 2 ½ to 5 years in State Prison, to run consecutive to the sentence that he is currently serving in the Department of Corrections and he must pay $4,530.00 in restitution.

Between June 1, 2012 and June 1, 2013, the defendant, who was an inmate at the New York Department of Corrections, submitted 441 separate NYC-210 forms in an attempt to claim $36,652.50 in New York City school tax credits in the form of a refund for the 2008-2011 tax years. Augustine did get $4,530.00 in tax refunds that were deposited into his commissary account at the correctional facility, authorities said.

The matter was investigated by the New York State Department of Corrections and the Criminal Investigation Division of the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance.

“It is difficult to fathom that a defendant behind bars could still continue to commit crimes, but this is a prime example of how industrious individuals continue to apply their trade,” commented DA David Soares. “These tax credits were designed to provide a bit of relief for residents of New York City, not for residents of Rikers Island.”

Augustine remains in the custody of the New York State Department of Corrections and will be sentenced on June 16, 2014. Assistant District Attorney Matthew Peluso of the Financial Crimes Unit is handling the prosecution of this case.

 

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