A Palmdale woman pleaded not guilty Monday to federal charges of filing false tax returns while working as a tax preparer, the U.S. attorney's office said.
Shela Gilford, 39, was indicted last month on eight felony counts, including preparing false tax returns in the names of clients and preparing false tax returns under aliases, according to U.S. Atty. Alejandro N. Mayorkas.
Freed after posting $50,000 bail, Gilford faces up to 24 years in federal prison and fines up to $800,000 if convicted. A trial before U.S. District Judge J. Spencer Letts is due to begin July 6.
Federal authorities said Gilford, who also used the surnames Alexander and Wilson, was targeted by the Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigation Division.