Tampa Car Dealer Pleads Guilty in Tax Scheme

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) _ A Tampa car dealer admitted in a plea agreement filed in U.S. District Court that he helped bilk the government out of almost $1.2 million in fraudulent tax returns.

The document filed Tuesday followed the May arrest of 42-year-old Russell Bruce Simmons Jr. on a 32-count indictment.

The Tampa Bay Times (http://bit.ly/Tu0tU7 ) reports Simmons agreed to plead guilty to one count of wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft.

The next step is for U.S. District Judge James D. Whittemore to decide whether to accept the plea agreement.

He faces two years on the identity theft charge and up to 20 years for wire fraud.

The newspaper reports Simmons was accused to laundering the refunds of fellow identity thieves through Simmons Auto Sales Inc.