U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm sentenced former attorney Saundra Lucille White, a/k/a Lucille Parrish-White and six variations of those names, age 57, of Lothian, Maryland, today to 11 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for mail fraud, wire fraud, money laundering, and aggravated identity theft in connection with a scheme to defraud clients of $841,908.57. Judge Grimm also entered an order requiring White to pay restitution of $841,908.57, and to forfeit that same amount, along with property and several vehicles.
The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Robert Geary of the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration; Anne Arundel County Police Chief Tim Altomare; and Interim Chief Henry P. Stawinski of the Prince George’s County Police Department.
According to the evidence presented at White’s seven day trial, in March 2010, White agreed to assist Victim H to obtain guardianship for a relative (Victim M) who had been incapacitated by a stroke. At White’s request Victim H provided White with an accounting of Victim M’s assets. With White’s assistance, Victim H obtained guardianship of Victim M a short time later. Victim M died on January 7, 2011. White was disbarred from the practice of law in the District of Columbia on January 20, 2011 and disbarred in Maryland on September 9, 2011. White did not inform Victim H of her pending disbarment, nor did she tell Victim H that she was no longer a licensed attorney.
According to trial evidence, from March 2010 through May 2013, White created fraudulent tax notices that purported to be from the Internal Revenue Service, and demanded payment of taxes purportedly owed by Victim M and by a deceased relative of Victim M. The notices required that payments be sent to an entity called Intel Realty Financial Services (IRFS) at a mailbox in Annapolis, Maryland, controlled by White. White then mailed and faxed the fraudulent tax notices to Victim H, advising Victim H that in her role as legal guardian of Victim M, she was required to remit payments for these taxes to the address in the notice. Once White obtained the checks sent by Victim H in response to the fraudulent tax notices, totaling $750,000, she deposited them in the bank accounts she opened in the names of IRFS and Victim M. White withdrew the funds from the bank accounts, forging Victim M’s signature on checks made out to White, other entities controlled by White, a family member, or otherwise for White’s benefit. White also obtained debit cards in Victim M’s name and attempted to obtain a Maryland driver’s license in the name of Victim M, but bearing White’s photograph. White used some of the money to purchase luxury items, including a $20,500 check used as a down payment for a 2011 Silver Volvo C70 hard-top convertible.
Today’s announcement is part of the efforts undertaken in connection with the President’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. The task force was established to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys’ offices, and state and local partners, it’s the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets; and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions and other organizations. Since fiscal year 2009, the Justice Department has filed over 18,000 financial fraud cases against more than 25,000 defendants. For more information on the task force, please visitwww.StopFraud.gov.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended TIGTA, the Anne Arundel County Police Department, and Prince George’s County Police Department for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas P. Windom and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney James I. Pearce of the U.S. Department of Justice, who prosecuted the case.