Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Aitkin Woman Faces Felony Tax Charges

The Minnesota Department of Revenue announced today that the Aitkin County Attorney’s Office recently charged Kristina Marie Backstrom, 53, of Aitkin, with four felony tax crimes.

Backstrom is charged with two counts of filing fraudulent returns for tax years 2005 and 2006, and two counts of failing to file income tax returns for 2007 and 2008. The complaint states that Backstrom falsified her 2005 and 2006 state income tax returns by overstating the amount of tax withheld by her employer, the Minnesota Department of Human Services’ Brainerd Regional Treatment Facility. According to the complaint, Backstrom received thousands of dollars in tax refunds because she over-reported state tax withholding.

The complaint charges that Backstrom claimed $4,595 in state taxes withheld from her paychecks in 2005 when the actual amount withheld was $459.53. As a result, Backstrom got a $1,017 state tax refund. The next year, she claimed $6,127 in state taxes withheld from her paychecks. The actual amount of tax withheld was $1,626.82. The result was a $3,165 refund.
The complaint also says Backstrom didn’t file 2007 and 2008 state tax returns, even though she earned $78,809 and $82,301, respectively, in each of those years. Backstrom also got $70,408 in retirement benefits in 2008, though not all of that was taxable.
Each felony is punishable by up to five years in prison, up to a $10,000 fine, or both.

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