Detroit rapper Sameerah “Crème” Marrell of rap duo Deuces Wild has been sentenced to over four years behind bars for her role in what became a $28 million tax fraud scheme.
According to Detroit News, U.S. District Judge Linda Parker sentenced the 42-year-old on Friday (February 24) to four-and-a-half years behind bars and three years on supervised release. Marrell pleaded guilty last month to mail fraud, wire fraud and committing an offense on bond.
Crème and her accomplices (one of which includes her Deuces Wild groupmate Noelle “Nikki” Brown) reportedly filed 122 false claims for income tax refunds with the IRS and the six different state treasuries between 2014 and 2022, seeking around $13.7 million from the IRS and approximately $14.7 million from the states.
The false filings were for income tax returns for estates and trusts and claimed that the IRS and state tax agencies withheld large amounts, and about $8.5 million combined before the claims were discovered to be fake. According to the IRS, Marrell continued to file false claims even after she was arrested.
“Ms. Marrell committed an astonishing amount of fraud against federal and state agencies,” Charles Miller, acting special agent in charge of IRS Criminal Investigation at the Detroit Field Office, said in a press release. “She also proved herself incorrigible, continuing her scams even after her initial arrest. We hope that today’s sentence will deter both Ms. Marrell and anyone else who seeks to steal public funds for private gain.”
Marrell owes over $7.9 million in restitution, reduced from $8.5 million after the federal government seized money, cars and jewelry from her during the investigation.
As previously reported, Crème was taken into custody in Memphis, Tennessee under a bench warrant issued for her arrest following her missed court date in October. She and Nikki were arrested in 2021 and charged with aggravated identity theft, false claims and conspiracy.
Of the 122 tax returns filed by the duo, 106 were filed as paper returns, Fox 2 reported at the time of their arrest — 69 in their home state of Michigan and 13 in Georgia. Twenty of the trust tax refund checks issued from those paper returns went into accounts opened by Sameerah Marrell, for a total of $1.3 million over the course of three years.
She was caught on surveillance cameras depositing two $60,000 checks issued to Lucid Communications and Clean Sweep Properties. She also deposited a second check made out to Lucid Communications in the amount of $57,000 and a $31,000 check paid to For Weaves Only Distributors Trust.
Crème had agreed to plead guilty in the case during the October hearing she missed. Following her arrest, her attorney Steven Fishman requested to be removed from he case, stating that he felt his relationship with his client had become unmanageable.
Prior to fleeing the state of Michigan Sameerah “Crème” Marrell was facing a 10-year prison sentence.