RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — The owner of a Lumberton tax preparation business was arrested on charges of tax fraud, federal officials said.

Emmanuel Wesner Jean, owner of Jean Tax Services, was charged with aiding and assisting in the preparation and presentation of a false and fraduluent return.

“Tax fraud is a crime that victimizes all of us,” said U.S. Attorney Michael Easley. “Working closely with IRS Criminal Investigation, we will continue to investigate and prosecute these cases.”

According to a complaint, Jean falsified the federal income tax returns of at least two clients without their knowledge by claiming false tax information that minimized their tax liabilities and maximized their refund amounts.

The clients learned Jean claimed these credits on their tax returns when they were subsequently audited by the IRS and required to repay the refunds they received, according to the complaint.

The complaint also says that Jean forged a prepared return as part of an undercover investigation by the IRS.

Jean was arrested at RDU International Airport attempting to board a flight to Haiti.

In a court appearance on Wednesday, Jean was ordered to be held in custody pending further proceedings. Jean faces a maximum penalty of three years in prison if convicted.