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Feds: Ogdensburg man filed bogus IRS claims worth $36 million

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An Ogdensburg man has been indicted on federal allegations that he filed fraudulent tax-refund claims worth $36 million, according to a statement released Monday by U.S. Attorney Richard S. Hartunian.

The indictment enumerates a staggering list of alleged claims by Glenn Richard Unger from 2007 to 2011, including a $35 million refund sought in March 2008. Prosecutors allege fraudulent filings in Saratoga and Albany counties and activities “in the Northern District of New York and elsewhere,” although the indictment does not specifically mention Ogdensburg or St. Lawrence County.

No address for him was listed, and his connection to the area was unclear. Calls and an email to the U.S. attorney’s office were not returned Monday afternoon.

A federal grand jury in Syracuse last month returned a seven-count indictment against Mr. Unger, 62, accusing him of obstructing and impeding the Internal Revenue Service. That indictment was unsealed last week in Albany, where Mr. Unger was arraigned Wednesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Randolph F. Treece.

Court records show Mr. Unger appeared at a detention hearing without an attorney and requested his release. Judge Treece said he would consider releasing Mr. Unger only if he signs a bond for an unspecified amount and posts real property to support it. The detention hearing was adjourned until Wednesday to give Mr. Unger an opportunity to post a bond.

The indictment lists the following allegedly fraudulent tax-refund filings by Mr. Unger:

n On Dec. 28, 2007, a $238,406 refund for the 2004 tax year.

n On Dec. 31, 2007, a $200,000 nonresident alien refund for 2007.

n On Jan. 2, 2008, a $112,546 refund for 2005.

n On Jan. 7, 2008, a $2,729 refund for 2006.

n On Feb. 25, 2008, a $65,121 refund for 2006.

n On March 21, 2008, a $35 million refund for 2007 and a separate $266,847 refund for 2007.

n On July 8, 2008, a $285,973 refund for 2008.

On April 20, 2011, Mr. Unger allegedly went on to file refund and abatement requests of $5,761 for 2005; $17,235 for 2006; $17,153 for 2007, and $5,584 for 2008, as well as seeking a refund of $90,096 for gifts made that year, although the indictment does not say to whom they were made.

Additionally, on June 17, 2011, Mr. Unger allegedly filed a false document with the Saratoga County clerk’s office attempting to reverse a $116,410 tax lien from 2009 in which the IRS challenged his “individual tax liabilities for tax years 2005 and 2006, and his frivolous filing penalties” for 2004-08.

“Upon receiving the false IRS forms, the IRS realized that they were fraudulent and did not issue any refund checks,” Mr. Hartunian wrote.

A jury trial has been set for March 4 in Binghamton before Senior Judge Thomas J. McAvoy.

If found guilty, Mr. Unger faces up to 20 years in federal prison, followed by a term of supervised release of up to three years and a maximum fine of $250,000.

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