A 52-year-old Lexington man was sentenced Wednesday to more than 14 years in prison for leading a conspiracy to use stolen identities to file false federal income tax returns that netted more than $600,000.
U.S. District Court Judge Danny Reeves sentenced David L. Pierce to 175 months in prison for wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and conspiracy to defraud the federal government. In addition, Reeves ordered more than $636,379 in restitution to be paid. Of that amount, Pierce and another defendant are responsible for more than $107,000.
Pierce had previously admitted that he led a conspiracy to file bogus federal income tax returns for a profit. Over a two year span, federal authorities say Pierce was helped by several co-conspirators as he fraudulently claimed over $3.7 million in tax refunds and received over $600,000 in payments from the Internal Revenue Service.
Three of Pierce's co-conspirators have already pleaded guilty and have been sentenced. Timothy Richard Smith, 51, was also sentenced Wednesday to 70 months or more than five years in jail. Joyce Ann Estes, 44, was sentenced Jan. 22 to 51 months or more than four years in prison. Stephen Lane Woodrum, 24, was sentenced Jan. 21 to 48 months or four years. A fourth co-conspirator Dwayne Ray Smith, will be sentenced Feb. 11.