6:15 a.m. – Rise and shine! There is something about the nation’s capital that makes you want to get up early and get out the door. It could be the inevitable traffic on the way into the city, especially on a day like today.
We had to stay in a hotel in northern Virginia last night because almost every room in D.C. was full ahead of today’s Supreme Court ruling on the health care law and individual mandate. A decision is expected to come around 10 o’clock this morning.
I think we may be the only people here who are not here to talk about health care. We were the first station to investigate Mo Money Taxes locally, and we want to see it through to the end.
Today a House subcommittee on crime, terrorism and homeland security is set to discuss identity theft and income tax preparation fraud. Mo Money Taxes is likely to be at the center of discussion, with a Norfolk victim scheduled to speak about his personal struggles with the company.
The hearing starts at 9:45 so I’ve got to run! Check back for updates throughout the day. You can also follow me on Twitter. My handle is @AnneWAVY.
9:42 a.m. – I am writing from inside the Rayburn Building where the hearing is about to begin. I have learned Michael Robinson is the Norfolk victim from Rep. Bobby Scott’s district who will be testifying today. I have received Rep. Scott’s prepared statement. He will speak primarily about his constituents struggles with Mo Money. His statement references WAVY TV 10 reports. We are underway. More to come…
11:00 a.m. – Norfolk victim Michael Robinson said he learned about Mo Money from a family member. He and his wife went to Mo Money to get an estimate ($3602). He felt funny about the company and left. Later he tried to file at Jackson Hewitt and was told Mo Money had already filed for him. JH discovered IRS paid Mo Money check in his name for $5270, which he still has not received to this date. He has filed an amendment.
Mo Money has remained the main topic of discussion. Victims would be encouraged to hear how the Congressman are holding the IRS rep’s feet to the fire. She cannot comment on ongoing investigations. She told Congressman Conyers she will take his comments back to the IRS. His response: “Taking it back is not enough. I want action.”
12:38 p.m. – Hearing is over. We will have reaction from the IRS, Rep. Scott and Mo Money Norfolk victim Michael Robinson tonight at 5. Here is a picture of Michael and me after our interview. He took a train from Norfolk to get here and he did a great job despite being a little nervous.
The victim advocate from the IRS was an insightful interview. She explained some of the Mo Money schemes described by the subcommittee falls into the cracks of banking regulations, meaning no one is watching over the money. There’s some talk about increasing penalties and changing laws to incorporate direct deposit victims.
See you at 5!