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1 of 3 co-conspirators sentenced in fraud case

A Florida man who worked at a doctor's office has been sentenced for his part in a scheme to steal patient information to use for making fraudulent credit cards and filing false tax returns. The man's scheme started in January of 2015 and continued through July of 2016. During that time, the trio of defendants stole the information for thousands of people.

The man worked at a pediatric practice. The scheme took information for pediatric patients, as well as their parents and guardians. He worked with two co-conspirators to get the scheme going. The three parties had an agreement to split the profits from the fraud.

The trio was accused of stealing personally identifying information for more than 13,000 people to apply for fraudulent credit cards. Around 180 fraudulent income tax returns were filed with stolen information. Due to the nature of the actions, the defendants faced federal charges for the fraud.

The man pleaded guilty last year to the charges placed against him. He was recently sentenced to six years in federal prison. His two co-conspirators have also pleaded guilty. They are both scheduled to face sentencing in April of this year.

For these defendants, the choice to plead guilty probably didn't come easily. Anyone who is facing serious charges should make sure that they take the time to understand what options they have to answer the charges.

It is imperative that you think about all of the possibilities for what might happen with each option. Being informed is one of the best things you can do when you are facing criminal charges.

Source: Tampa Bay Business Journal, "Tampa man sentenced for his role in data breach at local medical practice," Frances McMorris, March 29, 2017

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