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The Attorney General's Office has filed charges against a Lehigh County tax preparer, alleging he stole tens of thousands of dollars from his clients, some of whom are York residents.

Nick J. Chacanias, 55, of Slatington, is charged with eight counts each of theft by deception and forgery and one count of criminal use of a communication facility, according to online court records.

According to a release from the AG's office, Chacanias scammed his clients and stole more than $76,000 in total from all of them.

Allegations: The AG's office said that between 2012 and 2015, Chacanias received 72 checks from his clients for the purpose of filing state and federal tax returns, but he never filed the tax returns.

In six cases, Chacanias forged tax filings to make it look like he had filed his clients' tax returns with the state Department of Revenue, but he did not, the release states. One of his clients was scammed out of $32,000, and another was scammed out of $21,400, the AG's office said.

His other clients sent him varying amounts which all together totaled more than $76,000, the release states.

The AG's office said Chacanias owned and operated various companies as part of his scheme: C&M Accounting and Tax Solutions Inc., C&M Accounting and Tax Solutions and NJC Tax and Accounting Services, all of which were located in York.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro said in the release that consumers should check out their tax preparers online to see if they are legitimate.

Chacanias was arraigned on the charges Thursday at District Judge Jeffrey L. Oberdorf's office. Chacanias was remanded to York County Prison in lieu of $15,000 bail.

Jay Whittle, who is listed as Chacanias' attorney, did not return a message seeking comment.

Chacanias' preliminary hearing is scheduled for 9 a.m. May 18 at Oberdorf's office.

— Reach Christopher Dornblaser at cdornblaser@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at@YDDornblaser

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