French man sentenced for international tax scheme

MARTINSBURG, WEST VIRGINIA – Ayodele Arasokun, age 46, of Paris, France, was sentenced recently in West Virginia to 34 years in federal prison for orchestrating an international tax scheme.

Arakosun was convicted by a jury in October 2022 of twenty-one counts of wire fraud and aggravated identify theft. According to court documents and statements made in court, Arasokun coordinated a scheme to file 1,701 false returns and claim $9.1 million in refunds, with West Virginia residents among the victims.

Evidence presented at trial showed that Arasokun had the money transferred to pre-paid debit cards and checking accounts that he was monitoring. The investigation revealed approximately 700 U.S.-based accounts containing more than $50 million was being tracked by the defendant. A total of $2.2 million in fraudulent refunds were actually paid by the Internal Revenue Service.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Andrew Cogar and Eleanor Hurney.

The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) – Cybercrime Investigations Division, and the IRS-CI, Los Angeles field office investigated. 

TIGTA investigates abuses of the IRS’s online electronic portals, including the Electronic Filing Pin application, which was compromised in this case.

U.S. District Judge Gina M. Groh presided.

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