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Archive for Tax Fraud/Evasion/Crimes

Freeman Law Tax Court In Brief: Case Of State Senator Convicted On Federal Criminal Charges Including Fraud

Freeman Law Tax Court In Brief: Case Of State Senator Convicted On Federal Criminal Charges Including Fraud

Fumo v. Comm’r, T.C. Memo. 2021-31 | May 17, 2021 | Lauber, J. | Dkt. No. 17614-13

Short Summary

Taxpayer, a state senator with 30 years of service, was convicted on Federal criminal charges, including mail and wire fraud. One victim included a 501(c)(1) & (3) organization, exempt from Federal income tax.  Taxpayer influenced the tax-exempt organization’s formation as, at his direction, three members of his senatorial staff incorporated the organization for the purposes of maintaining and improving the aesthetic appearance of the taxpayer’s district. At all periods in question, at least one member of the taxpayer’s staff worked for the charity organization as either President or Executive Director while remaining employed by the Senator.  Taxpayer influenced, as chairman of a senate appropriations committee, funding for the charitable entity from public and private sources.

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IRS Criminal Investigation On Tax Refunds

U.S. Department Of Justice
Residents of Florida, Georgia and North Carolina Indicted for Promoting Tax Fraud Scheme

Allegedly caused $40 million in false tax refund claims to be filed

A federal grand jury in Orlando, Florida, returned an indictment April 21, 2021, charging residents of Florida, Georgia and North Carolina with promoting a tax fraud scheme.

According to the indictment, from 2013 to 2017, Iran Backstrom of Milledgeville, Georgia; Mehef Bey of Charlotte, North Carolina; Yomarie Febres of Atlanta, Georgia; and Aaron Aqueron of Clermont, Florida, allegedly conspired together and with others to promote a tax fraud scheme to more than 200 individuals in 12 states. The indictment alleges that the defendants recruited clients by falsely representing that the clients’ mortgages and other debts entitled them to tax refunds. To execute the scheme, the defendants and their conspirators allegedly prepared and caused clients to file tax returns that falsely claimed large amounts of income taxes had been withheld from the clients and paid over to the IRS, entitling the clients to tax refunds. According to the indictment, the defendants typically charged each client fees ranging from approximately $10,000 to $15,000 and did not report on their own tax returns any income generated from the scheme.

The indictment further alleges that when the IRS discovered the fraud and attempted to recover the fraudulently obtained tax refunds, Aqueron encouraged clients to provide the IRS with false information and remove funds from their bank accounts in order to thwart the IRS’s collection efforts. As a result of the scheme, the defendants allegedly filed, and caused to be filed, with the IRS approximately $40 million in fraudulent claims for tax refunds.

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OECD Launches Effective Inter-Agency Co-Operation in Fighting Tax Crimes and Other Financial Crimes

More than 200 global tax and economic crime experts have identified key areas for international action following the fifth OECD Forum on Tax and Crime, in London. In a week dominated by media coverage of offshore issues, the Forum brought experts on tax, customs, anti-corruption, anti-money laundering, policing, and prosecution together to agree priorities for action.

The Forum is the latest in a series of OECD-led events and an important opportunity for the international community to strengthen collaboration in tackling these global issues.

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Green Card Holder Pleads Guilty of Failing to File FBAR and Report UBS Account, Will Pay More than Half the Assets in FBAR and Tax Penalties

A Greenwich, Connecticut man pleaded guilty October 26, 2017, to failing to report funds he maintained in foreign bank accounts to the Department of Treasury, announced Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Chief Don Fort, IRS Criminal Investigation.

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U.S. Attorney & Swiss Firm To Resolve Tax Investigation

Prime Partners SA Will Pay $5 Million in Forfeiture and Restitution; Receives Non-Prosecution Agreement As a Result of its Extraordinary Cooperation

Joon H. Kim, the Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Stuart M. Goldberg, Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, and James D. Robnett, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (“IRS-CI”), announced today that Prime Partners SA (“Prime Partners”) entered into a non-prosecution agreement (“NPA”) with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and agreed to pay $5 million to the United States for assisting U.S. taxpayer-clients in opening and maintaining undeclared foreign bank accounts from 2001 through 2010. Read more

PHH Pays Millions For False Claims Act Liability

PHH Corp. PHH Mortgage Corp. and PHH Home Loans (collectively, PHH) have agreed to pay the United States $74,453,802 to resolve allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by knowingly originating and underwriting mortgage loans insured by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Federal Housing Administration (FHA), guaranteed by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and purchased by the Federal National Mortgage Association (“Fannie Mae”) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (“Freddie Mac”) that did not meet applicable requirements, the Justice Department announced today. PHH is headquartered in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, and PHH Home Loans operates in Edina, Minnesota. PHH has agreed to pay $65 million to resolve the FHA allegations and $9.45 million to resolve the VA and FHFA allegations. Read more

E-Commerce Company Pleads Guilty to Price-Fixing Conspiracy

Conspiracy Was Conducted Through Social Media and Encrypted Messaging Applications

An e-commerce company and its top executive have agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to fix prices for customized promotional products sold online to customers in the United States. Zaappaaz Inc. (d/b/a WB Promotions Inc., Wrist-Band.com and Customlanyard.net) and its president Azim Makanojiya agreed to plead guilty to a one-count criminal violation of the Sherman Act. Read more

Former Banker Pleads Guilty For Conspiring To Defraud The US

William Byrnes

A citizen and resident of Switzerland pleaded guilty today to conspiring to defraud the United States in connection with her work as the head of a team of bankers for Credit Suisse AG, announced Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente for the Eastern District of Virginia. Read more

Canadian Man Pleads Guilty to Conspiring to Defraud U.S.

A Canadian man pleaded guilty today in Rochester, New York to conspiring to defraud the United States and stealing government funds, announced Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Acting U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy Jr. for the Western District of New York. Read more

Money Laundering Evaluation Of The United States

William Byrnes

The United States has a well-developed and robust anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing (AML/CFT) regime through which it is effectively investigating and prosecuting money laundering and terrorist financing. However, the system has serious gaps that impede timely access to beneficial ownership information.

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Some Good News Taxpayers Can Be Thankful For This Holiday Season

Barry Fowler

Over the past several years, taxpayers—and I mean all taxpayers, from the lowest socio-economic level to the highest—have been victimized or at least contacted by scam artists posing as IRS agents.

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Interlinked System Of Beneficial Ownership Registers Coming Soon – Fighting Against Tax Crimes

William Byrnes

The European Commission expects to have in place by next year an interconnected, pan-European system of beneficial ownership registers, as part of the fight against money laundering and tax evasion, the European Commissioner, Věra Jourová, tells MEPs of the Inquiry committee into the Panama Papers scandal.

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