Michigan Real Estate Professional Sentenced on Tax and Bank Fraud Charges

A real estate businessman from Michigan was sentenced to spend a year and a day behind bars for tax and bank fraud. According to a press release by the Department of Justice, Richard Pierce engaged in the filing of false tax returns for the tax years between 2004 and 2013.  Within those returns, he failed to report more than $9 million of gross business income that would have led to a tax bill of over $400,000. The omitted income stemmed from several real estate businesses that Pierce controlled including Phoenix Real Estate Company, Phoenix Preferred Properties LLC, Detroit Matrix, First Metro Properties LLC, and RFP Ventures LLC. Through the government’s investigation of Pierce’s affairs, government law enforcement officials determined that Pierce committed bank fraud by falsely disclosing a kickback on an application to a mortgage lender. Pierce pleaded guilty to the charges in February of 2015.

In addition to spending over a year in prison, Pierce will spend two years under supervised release and will be required to pay restitution to the IRS. The financial sanctions against Pierce will be determined at a later court date.

Failing to accurately report income on a tax return is a crime and is taken very seriously by the IRS and the Department of Justice. A conviction for tax fraud can carry a sentence of up to five years in a federal prison. Additionally, those convicted or pleading guilty to filing a fraudulent tax return are typically sentenced to an additional term of supervised release after their stint in a physical prison. Finally, even a single count of tax fraud carries a fine of up to $250,000, not including back taxes, penalties, and interest.


The Value of an Experienced Tax Defense Attorney

A tax defense attorney has received copious amounts of legal training in critical areas of the law such as Constitutional law, criminal law, criminal procedure, and evidence. An experienced tax attorney can help ensure that while cooperating with federal or state tax authorities or investigators, you provide the information that is required by you under the law but avoid making incriminating statements that may be used against you later.

The tax and accounting professionals at the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing have extensive experience in representing taxpayers of all walks of life who find themselves in trouble with the IRS. Whether you are facing an egg-shell audit or find yourself in the midst of a full-blown criminal tax investigation, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced criminal tax defense attorney as soon as possible to establish a plan of action that is tailored for your unique situation. Contact the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing today for a reduced-rate consultation.


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