Wilmington Woman Sentenced in State Tax Fraud Case

Date: 8/16/2004

RALEIGH – A Wilmington woman pleaded guilty Monday in Wake County Superior Court to a tax charge filed by the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

Kristashia Janiki Covington, 27, of 1103 South 4th St., Wilmington, pleaded guilty to one count of obtaining property by false pretense involving her 2001 North Carolina individual income tax return.

Superior Court Judge Howard E. Manning, Jr. sentenced Covington to a six-month minimum, eight-month maximum prison term. The sentence was suspended and she was placed on supervised probation for 36 months and ordered to serve a 48-day active sentence in the New Hanover County Detention Center as a special condition of probation. She must also pay $492 in restitution to the Department of Revenue and obtain a drug abuse assessment.

The state’s evidence showed that Covington filed a North Carolina individual income tax return representing that she was employed by a local business, received income from that business and had North Carolina taxes withheld from her income. Covington was not employed by the business, did not receive the income and did not have taxes withheld as indicated on the tax return. As a result of the information contained in the return, the Department of Revenue issued Covington a $492 income tax refund that she was not entitled to receive.

The charge against Covington resulted from an investigation by a special agent with the Department’s Criminal Investigations Division in Raleigh. The investigation into the filing of fraudulent income tax returns using fictitious wage and tax statements continues and more arrests are expected.

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