Earlier this month, Danielle Denson claimed she never knew she had to file income tax returns for her income as an adult "exotic" dancer. However, she filed 323 tax returns in other citizen's names claiming more than $1.6 million in refunds from tax years 2008 to 2011. Sentencing Judge Susan Bucklew presiding over the case, expressed disbelief over Denson's claim that she was unaware that she was supposed to file tax returns on her income as a stripper, and stated: "What did you think the IRS did? Just give money back? Yet you were filing hundreds of tax returns? I have a hard time believing that." Judge Bucklew then proceeded to issue a Judgment for Denson to serve 6 years and 4 months in federal prison for her tax crimes.
Denson's defense attorney's attempted to convince the Judge that Denson's hard life led her to engage in fraud as a way to simply survive. Denson's attorney stated Denson's mother died of AIDS and her father abused her. One of the victim's mothers was not persuaded by Denson's attorney's argument. Her daughter is a 27 year old autistic female that resides in a group home. On the false returns, Denson listed the victim as a student which resulted in a $9,046 tax return. The mother of the victim stated the she had also been severely abused as a child, yet she had maintained her job for 29 years. The mother of the autistic female asked the court to give Denson the maximum sentence possible.
The prosecution was also not persuaded by Denson's arguments.
The Government argued that Denson did not just participate in tax fraud to survive but rather to support her lavish lifestyle, which included a new Mercedes, spending over $300,000 at the Hard Rock Casino in 2007, and spending $14,000 at Gucci.
The Tampa Tribune - "Tampa Exotic Dancer Sentenced for Tax Fraud"
The Tampa Tribune - "Woman Set to Plead Guilty in Tax Fraud of $1 Million Plus"
Newspitter.com - "A Stripper, Danielle Denson Gets 6 Years for Tax Refund Fraud"