Here’s some free advice: even if your Facebook is marked private, it really isn’t. Rashia Wilson, now 27, of Tampa, Fla. once bragged on Facebook about how she was scamming Uncle Sam.
A mother of three, Wilson was receiving government issued food stamp benefits while she and her boyfriend, Maurice Larry, were receiving IRS tax refunds totaling up to $1.3 million. They filed more than 220 fraudulent tax returns from 2009 to 2012. Wilson couldn’t keep this “blessing” to herself so she posted a photo of her wads of cash on Facebook and the caption read: “YES I’M RASHIA THE QUEEN OF IRS TAX FRAUD. IM’ A MILLIONAIRE FOR THE RECORD SO IF U THINK INDICTING ME WILL BE EASY IT WONT I PROMISE U! U need more than black and white to hold me down N that’s to da rat who went N told, as if 1st lady don’t have da TPD under her spell. I run Tampa right now.”
In court, she admitted to only $3 million but authorities believe the actual figure is closer to $20 million. Her defense attorney tried to prove to the court that because Wilson was born to a cocaine-addicted mother, certifying her as a “crack baby,” and her father was in prison while she grew up, her sentence shouldn’t be heavy. A psychologist argued that she suffered from bi-polar disorder and that the “adolescent bragging” in Facebook posts is consistent with manic-phase behavior.
Wilson has been sentenced to 21 years in prison for her elaborate scheme that includes wire fraud, aggravated identity theft, and felony possession of a firearm. She was arrested previously for grand theft auto, robbery, battery and affray (public fighting). Her large family, that she financially supported, was upset by the news.
Catch this dirt. Tampa police were first alerted to the fraud in 2010 when they noticed a drop in drug dealing in the area. The IRS-Criminal Investigations, the Secret Service, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office joined Tampa Police Department in the investigation of Wilson after she made this outrageous social media status update.
Check out how she spent her ill-gotten gains.