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A recent criminal tax case resulted in the conviction of a Utah dentist on counts including tax evasion, filing of false tax returns, and impeding IRS efforts to investigate these crimes. The defendant faces a potential sentence that will likely include multiple years of prison time as well as restitution and other monetary penalties.
Cases like these are important to know about because of what we can learn from the defendant’s mistakes. In this case, the defendant attempted to solve his issues by fabricating evidence and then decided to represent himself in court. If you find yourself in a similar situation, you should instead immediately reach out to a dual licensed Criminal Tax Defense Attorney & CPA.
At the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing, our Dual Licensed Tax Attorneys and CPAs are uniquely qualified to handle all of your tax issues at whatever stage in which you find yourself. To learn about how our services can benefit you today, call us at our offices at (800) 681-1295.
On Monday, March 21st, 2022, the Department of Justice announced via press release that a federal jury had convicted Derald Wilford Geddes of five charges, including tax evasion, filing false tax returns, and impeding a federal agency investigation.
Geddes, who resides in Ogden, Utah, was a licensed dentist who owned and operated his own practice at Mount Ogden Dental PC. An inspection of the online website for the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing shows that Geddes held his dentist license in the State of Utah from 1989 to 2016. However, his license has expired since that time.
According to court documents, Geddes was alleged to have evaded a total of roughly $1.8 million in back federal income taxes. This behavior went on throughout a period that extended from 1998 to 2014.
The government also claimed that Geddes obstructed the IRS in their efforts to collect on this debt. Geddes allegedly went so far as to file false liens against properties that he owned and submitted fraudulent bonds to discharge debt which were fabricated to appear as though they sourced from the account of the Treasury Secretary.
The initial indictment says Geddes used different businesses and made false statements to the IRS in an attempt to avoid paying taxes. Geddes submitted false documents entitled, "bond to discharge attachment for debt," in the hopes of resolving his outstanding tax bills and avoiding having his property seized, the charging documents say. The "bond to discharge attachment for debt" is a type of bond that a debtor can purchase that would seek to prevent a creditor from seizing property.
The indictment says Geddes filed these sorts of bonds multiple times to avoid having his property seized, though these bonds were bogus. In 2007, he submitted a bogus bond to the IRS that he claimed satisfied his outstanding tax amounts from 1997 to 2005, the indictment says.
Geddes also reported in tax returns to the IRS, that from 2011-2013, his dental office, Mount Ogden Dental, had no gross receipts. The indictment says that Geddes knew this wasn't true, as the business had six-figure sums for the gross receipts in each of the three years. Those filings were the basis for the three counts of filing false tax returns.
Geddes is not being held in custody at this time but is scheduled for a sentencing hearing on May 31st. For his conviction, Geddes faces a potential maximum of up to five years for the one tax evasion charge, plus three years for each of the three counts of filing a false tax return and the one count of impeding the IRS’ investigation. Geddes also may face additional restitution and monetary finds as prescribed by statutory limits.
As in any significant criminal tax conviction, there are a number of lessons that we can learn about safe practices and optimal tax strategizing. Below are some of the important notes that stood out to our Dual Licensed Tax Attorneys and CPAs.
Geddes was ultimately convicted for his efforts to avoid paying taxes that extended back over two decades ago. While some tax crimes are beholden to a statute of limitations, which puts a limit on when the government can pursue criminal tax charges, others do not. Therefore, if you are concerned about any tax noncompliance anywhere in your history of returns, it is important that you work with a Dual Licensed Tax Attorney and CPA to address those concerns before the government does it for you.
Geddes was caught in a difficult spot. His response was, to say the least, sub-optimal. By taking deliberate steps to deceive the IRS in their investigation, Geddes may have potentially added years to his prison sentence. No matter what situation you may find yourself in, there are other options available that could help without forcing you to commit additional fraudulent crimes.
Court documents reveal that Geddes was granted the opportunity to represent himself at trial. While you may see this happen on television shows, you should be aware that taking on your own criminal defense presents a world of hazards for you, regardless of whether you did anything wrong. Your first step upon discovering that you are facing a government audit or criminal investigation should be to call your Dual Licensed Tax Lawyer and CPA.
If you have serious concerns about your past tax noncompliance or the potential of an audit or criminal tax investigation, you deserve serious legal counsel to match. To find out more, call (800) 681-1295 to speak with the Dual Licensed Tax Lawyers and CPAs at the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing or schedule online HERE.
If you have failed to file a tax return for one or more years or have taken a position on a tax return that could not be supported upon an IRS or state tax authority audit, eggshell audit, reverse eggshell audit, or criminal tax investigation, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced tax defense attorney to determine your best route back into federal or state tax compliance without facing criminal prosecution.
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!