She was supposed to help clients with taxes but helped herself instead

Doris Kelley
Doris Kelley

A Gulfport woman will be sentenced in July after pleading guilty to filing false returns with the IRS.

Doris Kelley, 65, operated a tax return preparation business out of her home. She was accused of either not filing returns for her clients or filing false returns. She also was accused of having her clients make checks for taxes owed directly to her, rather than the IRS, and using that money for herself.

The Justice Department’s Tax Division and the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of Mississippi prosecuted the case.

According to court documents, Kelley used the money given to her for taxes to gamble at Coast casinos. Typically, according to a press release, Kelley provided copies of accurate returns to her clients, but then did not file any return with the IRS. In some cases, she also filed false returns in her clients’ names without their knowledge. The documents also allege that Kelley made hundreds of thousands of dollars from the scheme and caused a tax loss to the government of $495,000.

Kelley faces a maximum of three years in prison on both counts. She also could face supervised release, restitution and monetary penalties as part of her sentence.

Sentencing is scheduled for July 7.