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According to a Department of Justice press release, a tax professional from Louisiana was recently sentenced to serve 24 months in federal prison after being convicted of filing fraudulent tax returns and conspiring to defraud the U.S. government. Considering recent examination staff increases at the IRS, taxpayers should be more mindful than ever as to the risks and potential consequences of a tax examination and potential criminal tax prosecution especially where your preparer is a crook. If you haven’t filed a tax return for one or more years or have been untruthful as to the contents of your tax return and used an over aggressive preparer, you should contact an experienced tax defense attorney to determine the best strategy to come into compliance.
Court records reveal that Michegel Butler of St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana, was the owner and operator of Crown Tax Service. Crown served clients in and around the Kenner area of Louisiana. Butler admitted that between January and April 2013, he and other co-conspirators worked with clients to falsify documents purporting to evidence expenditures for which deductions were taken (manufacturing receipts). For instance, Butler assisted clients misrepresent Schedule C business deductions. Likewise, he employed fraudulent tax reduction tactics such as claiming bogus childcare expense deductions and falsely claiming dependents on clients’ tax returns.
Federal prosecutors and the IRS estimated that Butler’s illegal activities caused a tax loss of more than $100,000. In addition to his two-year prison sentence, Butler will be required to serve three years of supervised release upon the completion of his physical incarceration. Additionally, he was ordered to pay over $90,000 in restitution to the IRS.
The story above exemplifies the potential consequences that come with falsifying a federal tax return. Many taxpayers believe that the IRS and Department of Justice only go after those who have evaded the payment of millions of dollars of taxes. But that simply isn’t the case. The IRS has a track record of vigorously pursuing taxpayers of all sizes if there is evidence of intentional disregard of the nation’s tax laws.
If you have been dishonest in the filing of your tax return or have failed to file a tax return altogether, it is in your best interest to seek the guidance of an experienced tax defense attorney. Together, you will flesh out the pertinent facts of your case and develop a plan to maximize potential benefits while minimizing potential risk areas. With the help of a seasoned tax attorney, you will never have to go up against the IRS alone.
Note: As long as a taxpayer that has willfully committed tax crimes (potentially including non-filed foreign information returns coupled with affirmative evasion of U.S. income tax on offshore income) self-reports the tax fraud (including a pattern of non-filed returns) through a domestic or offshore voluntary disclosurebefore the IRS has started an audit or criminal tax investigation / prosecution, the taxpayer can ordinarily be successfully brought back into tax compliance and receive a nearly guaranteed pass on criminal tax prosecution and simultaneously often receive a break on the civil penalties that would otherwise apply.
It is imperative that you hire an experienced and reputable criminal tax defense attorney to take you through the voluntary disclosure process. Only an Attorney has the Attorney Client Privilege and Work Product Privileges that will prevent the very professional that you hire from being potentially being forced to become a witness against you, especially where they prepared the returns that need to be amended, in a subsequent criminal tax audit, investigation or prosecution.
Moreover, only an Attorney can enter you into a voluntary disclosure without engaging in the unauthorized practice of law (a crime in itself). Only an Attorney trained in Criminal Tax Defense fully understands the risks and rewards involved in voluntary disclosures and how to protect you if you do not qualify for a voluntary disclosure.
As uniquely qualified and extensively experienced Criminal Tax Defense Tax Attorneys, KovelCPAs and EAs, our firm provides a one stop shop to efficiently achieve the optimal and predictable results that simultaneously protect your liberty and your net worth. See our Testimonials to see what our clients have to say about us!
Regardless of your business or estate needs, the professionals at the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing are here for you. We are open for business and our team will help ensure that your business is too. Contact the Law Offices of David W. Klasing today to discuss your business with one of our professionals.
In addition to our main office in Irvine, the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing has unstaffed (conference room only) satellite offices in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara, Panorama City, Oxnard, San Diego, Bakersfield, San Jose, San Francisco, Oakland, Carlsbad and Sacramento. During the COVID-19 pandemic, our staff are working from home, but have full virtual meeting capability.
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