In a criminal tax matter apparently stretching all the way back to 1986, the accountant for Nifty Fifty restaurants pleaded guilty to criminal tax and other charges in January 2015. The charges concerned an array of improper and illegal actions concerning the company’s income, the company’s taxes, and the accountant’s personal income taxes. This week, the accountant was sentenced on the tax fraud and other charges he faced.
For nearly 30 years, accountant William J. Frio provided accounting and tax preparation services for the restaurant chain. However, during that time the accountant was engaged in multiple schemes to avoid paying taxes. He pleaded guilty to a decades-long scheme where he and other principals of the restaurant would significantly undervalue or otherwise fail to account for gross receipts. In all, this tax evasion scheme resulted in the evasion of more than $2.28 million in taxes. Furthermore, Frio also faced criminal charges for submitting false personal income tax returns and embezzling more than $4 million dollars from the company while structuring the transactions in an attempt to evade detection. Frio pleaded guilty to all charges and faced a potential 57 years in federal prison, millions in restitution, up to $2.75 million in fines, and criminal forfeiture.
William J. Frio faced a number of extremely serious charges and tax charges. The crimes he was charged with and pleaded guilty to are:
Furthermore, per 31 U.S.C. § 5324, Frio was also subject to forfeiture of his ill-gotten gains which included the $2.6 million in cash implicated in the structuring charges.
In light of the potential 57 years in prison originally faced by Frio, the sentence that was imposed was harsh, but relatively slight in comparison to the maximum. The 58 year old Frio was sentenced to five years in prison and four years of supervision following his release from federal prison. Additionally Frio faces a restitution payment of $1.7 million and a special assessment of $700.
If you are facing criminal tax charges due to violation of federal or state tax obligations, the experienced tax professionals of the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing can help. The lawyers of the firm are dedicated to offering strategic options to combat criminal tax charges. As this tax matter makes clear, prosecutors from the Department of Justice are aggressive and will prosecute to the fullest extent of the law. When the stakes are too high to go it alone, the experienced tax professionals of the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing can help. To schedule a reduced-rate consultation, call 800-681-1295 or contact us online.