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According to news outlets and a press release by the Department of Justice, Ronald Jerome Boyd, 58, of Torrance, plead guilty last week to a list of federal charges. The legal action against Boyd was related to his relationship with his law enforcement position and his economic interests at a third-party software development business. Boyd, who was the Police Chief for the Port of Los Angeles, was indicted by a federal grand jury last year on 16 counts, including tax evasion, wire fraud, failing to file a federal tax return, and lying to federal investigators.
According to court documents, Boyd held an economic stake at BDB Digital Communications, a software development company that was created in order to secure a contract to create a social networking solution for the police department at the Port of Los Angeles. In 2011, Boyd was able to secure a profits interest in the business venture by ensuring that the contract submitted by BDB would be accepted by the Port of Los Angeles. As he promised, the Port moved forward with BDB and Los Angeles city officials worked with BDB to roll the software out to the entire city, calling it Metrowatch, allowing police officers to communicate with each other and the public about the safety of the community. Under Boyd’s agreement with BDB, he was entitled to receive 13.33 percent of the total gross revenues coming from the new application. Many of the charges against Boyd are related to his relationship with BDB and reflect the government’s unwillingness to allow an individual to profit off of the trust that is instilled in them by the public.
The other charges that Boyd pleaded guilty to involve his private security business. According to the Department of Justice, Boyd owned At Close Range, an entity that provided security for various events and to individuals. The government alleged that Boyd had failed to file tax returns for the entity itself, as well as had failed to include the income that he had made stemming from the business on his personal tax returns. Although he was charged with several counts of each, Boyd’s agreement with the government allowed him to only plea to one count of failing to file a tax return for his business and one count of tax evasion for failing to include his business income on his personal return. Boyd will be back in a federal court on July 25th for sentencing. He faces up to 11 years in a federal prison.
The Charges against Boyd were the result of a joint-investigation by the IRS Criminal Investigation Division and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Although it is unclear which entity began investigating him first, Boyd certainly felt the pressure of the federal government coming at him from more than one direction. Many taxpayers believe that they will be able to dupe IRS agents upon audit. What many fail to realize is that IRS agents (especially those at the Criminal Investigation Division) are trained federal investigators who specialize in sniffing out the truth and detecting when a taxpayer is being deceiving. When enough badges of fraud (industry speak for red flags) come up during an examination, the case is sent to other governmental departments and agencies for further action. Once the Department of Justice is involved, it may be too late to avoid criminal charges. That is where an experienced criminal tax attorney comes in. In order to inadvertently fall into an extremely dangerous situation (legally speaking), a taxpayer should consult with a criminal tax lawyer at the first sign of trouble. As mentioned above, when the IRS believes that a taxpayer is being dishonest, things can begin moving very quickly. An experienced tax attorney can ensure that incriminating information is not given up during any critical stage of a tax audit or investigation.
The tax and accounting professionals at the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing have extensive experience representing taxpayers from all walks of life in varying tax situations. Whether you are an individual who is subject to an examination by the IRS or you are a small to medium-sized business owner who is being investigated for a federal or state tax issue, our team of tax professionals is ready to zealously advocate for your best interests and will make our best attempt to keep you out of jail. If you are in tax trouble, there is no substitute for a tried-and-true tax attorney to help ensure your success in coming away from the situation unscathed. Contact the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing today for a reduced-rate consultation and be sure to check out our videos on our YouTube page for more information on our services.