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January 24, 2023

Los Angeles Attorney Sentenced for a Scheme Involving Stolen Federal Tax Refund Checks

On December 12, 2022, in the Central District of California, Attorney Thaddeus Culpepper was sentenced for his role in a scheme involving stolen Federal tax refunds issued via U.S. Treasury checks. 

According to the court documents, beginning no later than April 2015 and continuing until about September 2018, Culpepper opened accounts at three separate financial institutions in and around Los Angeles, California, all of which were insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Culpepper and others then fraudulently obtained 21 tax refund checks totaling more than $1.3 million, made payable to other individuals due refunds on their Federal income taxes, and forged the payees’ endorsements without their permission or authorization. Culpepper then deposited the forged checks into the accounts in his control also without the payees’ permission or authorization. The listed payees confirmed that they never received their Federal tax refunds.

Culpepper was sentenced to 37 months’ imprisonment, followed by supervised release for a term of one year.

Source:  The facts in this case narrative come from the following publicly available documents:  C.D. Cal. Crim. Compl., filed Sept. 27, 2018; C.D. Cal. Indict., filed Oct. 5, 2018; and C.D. Cal. Sentencing, filed December 12, 2022.