Syam

Shannon Tecoko Mays

After five years of running from justice, this week a Dallas tax preparer pleaded guilty to his role in heading a tax scam that netted more than $6 million by stealing the identity of elderly and disabled victims nationwide.

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Shannon Mays

It’s been roughly five years since Syam Investments, its owner Shannon Mays and affiliates like Diana Broussard McCoy from Port Arthur were exposed in the pages of this newspaper for bilking hundreds of Southeast Texans out of tens of thousands of dollars. And since then, those who say they were victimized by the group have been waiting for some form of justice.

But now, with the suspected criminal mastermind behind bars, they may at long last get their day in court.

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In August 2012, The Examiner blew the lid off the Syam tax scam, exposing the corrupt company and its staff of swindlers exploiting hundreds of elderly and disabled taxpayers in order to line their own pocketbooks. After intense scrutiny, investigators’ efforts have finally borne fruit.

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A company under investigation for defrauding hundreds of Southeast Texans has changed its name, but it hasn’t kept investigators from targeting the cross-country enterprise. Initially operating under the umbrella of Syam Investments, the company and its officers are alleged to have used promises of a false “Social Security stimulus” to lure the elderly and disabled into turning over sensitive information such as bank account, Social Security and identification numbers.

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Shannon Mays

The Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott today charged Syam Tax Services, LLC and two of its officers – Shannon Mays and Marshrief Shead – with fraudulently obtaining elderly Texans’ sensitive personal information and illegally filing falsified federal income tax returns on their behalf.

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A scam targeting the elderly and disabled has continued to flourish even after an Examiner investigation and subsequent FBI raid exposed a ring of actors filing fraudulent income tax returns on behalf of their victims. 

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As previously reported in the pages of this newspaper, a scam targeting seniors and persons receiving disability benefits made its way through Jefferson County in the past few months, with residents of Port Arthur impacted at a significant rate. Those perpetrating the scam duped victims by promising them access to a federal stimulus check, allegedly available to all Social Security recipients, even though no such provision exists. Victims supplied the scammers with copies of their driver’s license, Social Security number, and banking information.

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A scam targeting seniors and persons receiving disability benefits made its way through Jefferson County the past few months, with residents of Port Arthur impacted at a significant rate. Those perpetrating the scam duped victims by promising them access to a federal stimulus check, allegedly administered to all Social Security recipients, even though no such provision exists. Victims supplied the scammers with copies of their driver’s license, Social Security number, and banking information.

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After The Examiner revealed that hundreds of elderly and disabled Southeast Texans were targeted in a scam to bilk needy citizens with promises of a federal stimulus check, a search warrant was executed at the Port Arthur home of one of the suspected perpetrators.


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