Crime - Sacto 911

Owner of immigration services business headed to prison for identity theft

The owner of an immigration services business in Gold River has been sentenced to two years in prison for an identity theft scheme that involved filing a fraudulent tax return.

Ilie Zdragat, 30, of Sacramento was sentenced Thursday by U.S. District Judge Troy Nunley, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office news release.

Zdragat was the founder and director of Immigration Visa Services Organization, or IVSO, which helped clients with asylum and citizenship applications, deportation proceedings and other immigration-related matters, according to court documents. Between April 4 and Sept. 28, 2012, Zdragat submitted a fraudulent income tax return through Turbo Tax to the IRS.

According to the plea agreement, Zdragat and another individual, on Sept. 28, 2012, electronically filed a false 2011 income tax return for an individual and two dependents using the names and personal information of three of IVSO’s former clients. The victims had not given Zdragat permission to file a tax return on their behalf. The tax return sought a $6,200 refund.

Zdragat used a physical address in San Francisco that was not connected to him in an effort to disguise his involvement in the scheme, the news release said. The IRS did not process the fraudulent tax return.

Zdragat was ordered to begin serving his sentence on May 30.

The case resulted from an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Internal Revenue Service Investigation Division.

Cathy Locke: 916-321-5287, @lockecathy