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Unregistered preparer obtained $110k using myGov access

An unregistered tax preparer who fraudulently obtained close to $110,000 in refunds by using taxpayers’ personal myGov details is currently awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to charges.

Business Jotham Lian 15 November 2019
— 1 minute read

Posing as a tax agent, Benjamin Cox lodged over a thousand individual tax returns using each taxpayer’s personal myGov access.

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Mr Cox charged clients for his services while using his own bank account to receive refunds, receiving a total of $109,800 from 1,098 individual victims.

Detectives from Mount Druitt Police Area Command, assisted by the ATO, arrested the 33-year-old at his home in July following reports that he was targeting travelling workers in the Sydney metropolitan area.

NSW Police claimed that he mostly targeted taxpayers in Australia on working holidays, charging $100 for his services and retaining the tax refunds.

He has since pleaded guilty to dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception, and dealing with identity information to commit indictable offence.

The maximum penalty for each charge is imprisonment for 10 years.

Mr Cox is due for sentencing on 4 December 2019 at Mount Druitt Court.

The ATO has previously indicated that it is concerned about the number of people claiming to be tax agents, often promising refunds that sound too good to be true or providing much cheaper services than legitimate registered tax agents, vowing to work closely with the TPB to stamp out the illegal practice.

Unregistered preparer obtained $110k using myGov access
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Jotham Lian

Jotham Lian

Jotham Lian is the news editor of Accountants Daily, the leading source of breaking news, analysis and insight for Australian accounting professionals.

Before joining the team in 2017, Jotham wrote for a range of national mastheads including the Sydney Morning Herald, and Channel NewsAsia.

You can email Jotham at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

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