FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - The two young women from Dillon who pleaded guilty to theft of government funds have been sentenced to prison time.
Nina Monique Allen, 32, and 38-year-old Wendy Marie Johnson entered those guilty pleas in a federal court in Florence - Allen to theft of government funds and Johnson to aggravated identity theft.
US States Attorney Bill NEttles said evidence in their case indicates Allen was an office manager for EZ Loan and Tax Services in Dillon where Johnson worked preparing tax returns.
"Johnson used personal information obtained from former clients of EZ Loan to file tax returns and obtain refunds electronically. Upon receiving the refund, Johnson and Allen would apply a small refund as a credit for loan payments on existing EZ Loan customer's accounts, then issue a "change check" in someone else's name. Allen would then recruit people to cash the new checks. Allen recruited nine individuals who were paid between $20 and $200 to cash the checks. The balances of approximately $30,000 received from the IRS was split between Johnson and Allen," Nettles explained.
United States District Judge R. Bryan Harwell sentenced Allen to five months in prison and three years supervised release. Johnson was sentenced to 24 months in prison and three years supervised release. They were both ordered to pay $26,059.55 in restitution.