Group Claims to Hold Romney Tax Records For Ransom
September 8th, 2012
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While Democrats have been chiding Mitt Romney to release his tax records, the former governor has released his 2010 and 2011 tax returns. However, a group has now claimed that they have hacked PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) and obtained Romneyâs tax returns and are holding them ransom for $1 million.
However, while some are claiming it is a hoax, the Secret Service and the FBI are treating it very serious. PWC is the confirmed preparer for Romneyâs 2010 tax returns. The PWC in Franklin, TN received an anonymous letter informing them of the ransom demands, it was the Boston office that prepared Romneyâs tax returns in 2010 and the Chairmanâs office is in New York.
According to Forbes,
The letter asserted that the returns would be sent to major media outlets unless Romney paid them $1 million in Bitcoin; Bitcoin isnât actual money but rather internet currency that can be swapped for goods, services or cash online. The deadline for the âransomâ is September 28.
For its part, PWC says that they donât have any evidence that anything was actually stolen. Thereâs been no sign of a break-in and no indication that data has been compromised.
Romneyâs camp hasnât responded to the claims. Quite frankly, theyâd be foolish to do so; almost anything they could say or do at this point â from paying the ransom to releasing the records themselves before the deadline â has the potential to make them look scared, desperate and gullible.
The anonymous postings say that flash drive copies of the stolen material have been sent to the company, as well as to the county Democratic and Republican offices, and that a scanned image of Romneyâs signature from the forms was included.
Jean Barwick with the Williamson County, Tennessee, Republican Party told CNN that her office found the package â a padded envelope â on Friday outside the door to the party offices. The package âdidnât seem credible,â partly because it said âfor leardersâ instead of âleaders,â she said. Inside were a letter â one that has been posted online â and a flash drive.
âI didnât put that in any of our computers,â and no one has looked at the contents, she said. âI put it in the drawer.â
She called state party officials, who were in Tampa, Florida, at the Republican National Convention at the time, she said.
Her office later reported the package to local police, and the Secret Service picked it up Wednesday, she said.
Obviously this group has a spelling problem, and itâs understandable why someone would not put the flash drive in their computer. The fact that the group wants to be paid in Bitcoins tells me they are either stupid or the whole thing is a fraud, or maybe both.
I previously did aÂ story on Romneyâs returnsÂ and frankly, there isnât much to see in the 2010 tax returns. Should these people be telling the truth about the ones they have allegedly obtained, I doubt there is going to be anything in them that would be incriminating, except for the fact that the Democrats would use them to give Romney the appearance of looking bad for making a lot of money and paying a lot of taxes, even if those taxes are less percentage wise than other people.
AboutÂ Tim Brown: Â Husband to my wife. Father of 10. Jack of All Trades. Christian and lover of liberty. Follow Tim onÂ Twitter.Â
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