Tax preparers Jackson Hewitt have bilked the government out of more than $70 million, alleges a suit filed yesterday by the Justice Department. The suit claims that over 125 of the company's franchises, all owned at least in part by the same Atlanta businessman, engaged in massive tax fraud.
Charges include filing fake W-2s and claiming deductions on nonexistent businesses.Defendants allegedly actively encouraged fraud and deception at the franchises, where employees reportedly took kickbacks from satisfied customers. Jackson Hewitt operates 5,802 franchises and 724 company-owned stores.
(Read more Department of Justice stories.)