Niagara Falls Man Sentenced to Prison for Fraud, Obstructing IRS

September 23, 2011 Updated Sep 23, 2011 at 10:36 AM EDT

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Niagara Falls Man Sentenced to Prison for Fraud, Obstructing IRS

September 23, 2011 Updated Sep 23, 2011 at 10:36 AM EDT

Buffalo, N.Y. (WKBW release) -- A 41-year-old Niagara Falls man on Thursday was sentenced to 87 months in prison for fraud and obstructing the Internal Revenue Service.

Randall McGovern was sentenced to 87 months in prison for gift card fraud, and 36 months in prison for obstructing the IRS by U.S. District Court Judge William M. Skretny. The sentences will run concurrently.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul J. Campana, who handled the case, stated that  McGovern defrauded Home Depot and Lowe’s out of $90,000 while serving a state prison term late in 2005 and early in 2006. While at the Livingston Correctional Facility, the defendant used the prison’s phone system to make three–way calls to the toll free gift card numbers of Home Depot and Lowe’s and made unauthorized gift card orders in the names of several businesses. The cards were delivered to designated addresses, which included abandoned houses. In addition, McGovern sold construction equipment he knew was encumbered by IRS tax liens, and failed to notify the IRS that he had done so, obstructing efforts of the IRS in 2008 and 2009 to collect approximately $193,000 in taxes.

Citing McGovern’s long history of felony convictions, Judge Skretny told McGovern he was a “career fraudster” whose life was marked by “pathological lying,” and that he “could not be trusted.” Judge Skretny ordered McGovern to make restitution of $193,635 to the U.S. Treasury and approximately $90,000 to Home Depot and Lowe’s.