A physician in the Bay Area was sentenced to a year and a day in prison by a federal judge last week for submitting fraudulent tax returns. He was also ordered to pay $10,000 in fines and over $115,000 in restitution to the IRS.

Ali Vaziri, a licensed medical doctor from Napa, California was the target of a joint effort by the Internal Revenue Service, Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Health and Human Services. According to a press release by the Department of Justice, Vaziri intentionally falsified his tax returns for four years, beginning in 2005.

Vaziri pled guilty earlier this year and admitted that during the tax years at issue, he overstated the costs associated with his northern California medical practice. In 2006, his overstatement of deductions caused him to avoid over $60,000 in taxes that would otherwise be due to the IRS. Vaziri agreed that including interest and penalties, he owed the IRS $268,568.91.

It can be said that Vaziri was extremely lucky in that he walked away with only a year and a day in prison. Under current law, a judge can sentence a taxpayer found guilty of willfully falsifying their tax returns to up to 3 years in prison for each year that the returns were falsified.

Regardless of whether you are a taxpayer that works as an employee or if you are a business owner, this story evidences that IRS and Department of Justice will find your mistakes, whether they be intentional or not. If you have been targeted by the IRS with an audit or a criminal investigation, it is in your best interest to contact a seasoned tax attorney. The process can be a scary one, but it is not a situation that is unwinnable. The professionals at the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing are here for you. Contact us today to set up a meeting with us to discuss your case.