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Tag Archive for Criminal Tax Investigations

Man Convicted of Threatening To Assault And Kill IRS Agent And Torture The Agent’s Family Over Audit Proceedings

While death and taxes are always certain, take lesson from Andrew A. Calcione that you should never mix them together.

In May 2014, a federal judge found 49-year-old Andrew A. Calcione of Cranston, Rhode Island, guilty of threatening to assault an IRS Revenue Agent, rape and kill the agent’s wife and injure the agent’s daughter while the agent watched before murdering the agent. The reason? Mr. Calcione didn’t want to pay his tax bill of $330,000.

According to government testimony as reported in United States of America v. Andrew A. Calcione, U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island (Providence County), Case No. 1:13-mj-00291-LDA, Mr. Calcione was selected for audit for the years 2008, 2009 Read more

Beware! New E-Mail Scam Using The IRS Name Targeting Foreign Taxpayers With U.S. Bank Accounts

An e-mail claiming to come from the IRS claims:

“Our records indicate that you are a Non-resident, and that you are exempted from the United States of America Tax reporting and withholding on interest paid to you on your account and other financial benefits. To protect your exemption from tax on your account and other financial benefits, you need to re-certify your exempt status to enable us confirm your records with us. Therefore, you are required to authenticate the following by completing form W-8BEN attached and return same to us as soon as possible with a valid copy of government issued Identification (e.g., International Passport) through the email at the bottom of the form.” Read more

Hiding Money Or Income Offshore Among The List Of Tax Scams For The 2015 Filing Season

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen was proud to announce that “the recent string of successful enforcement actions against offshore tax cheats and the financial organizations that help them shows that it’s a bad bet to hide money and income offshore and he encouraged taxpayers to come in voluntarily and getting their taxes and filing requirements in order.”

Since the first Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) opened in 2009, the IRS reports there have been more than 50,000 disclosures and the IRS has collected more than $7 billion from this initiative alone. The IRS also has conducted thousands of offshore-related civil audits that have produced tens of millions of dollars. Finally, the IRS has also pursued criminal charges leading to billions of dollars in criminal fines and Read more

IRS Targeting California As Its Booming Economy Overtakes Brazil As The World’s Seventh Largest Economy

California is overtaking Brazil as the world’s seventh-largest economy, bolstered by rising employment, home values and personal and corporate income, a year after the U.S. most-populous state surpassed Russia and Italy. Brazil has a population five times bigger than California’s 38.3 million; yet the Golden State with GDP of $2.20 trillion in 2013, expanded last year by almost every measure. In contrast, Brazil’s GDP declined 1% from $2.25 trillion. California’s economy has sustained its momentum since 2013, when the value of goods and services produced in the state topped that of Russia and Italy to vault California to No. 8 in the world. California grew an average of 4.1% annually during the last three years. Who is next ahead of California in the No. 6 spot? United Kingdom with a GDP of $2.68 trillion. Read more

Does The National Football League Deserve Tax-Exempt Status?

Now here is a fact that is not so widely known – the National Football Association which you figure makes a ton of money is recognized by the IRS as a tax-exempt entity.

Besides the match-up of the Seahawks and the Patriots in Super Bowl 49, people are excited over the entertainment and half-time show, what celebrities will be attending the game and of course – the commercials.

Sponsors present their best commercials during the Super Bowl, and the big game wouldn’t be the same without them. For the advertising community, the Super Bowl is their Super Bowl, and often creates commercials specifically for the enormous viewership that the game provides. For many, watching the commercials is the most entertaining part of Read more

Beware of IRS Scams Extended To Taxpayers Appealing To The U.S. Tax Court

Process of Appealing To U.S. Tax Court

Under normal audit procedures, the IRS issues a 30-day letter, giving a taxpayer 30 days to file a protest and request an Appeals hearing. On the taxpayer’s failure to request a hearing or following an Appeals hearing, the Service issues a 90-day letter (officially called a “Notice Of Deficiency”), giving the taxpayer 90 days to file a Tax Court petition before collection proceedings begin.

With the reduction in the number of IRS audits and a reliance on computer matching, some taxpayers are facing automatic computer-generated 90-day letters, without first receiving a 30-day letter. IRS personnel call this practice, “smokeout” whereby the 90 days will toll Read more

Think You Can Hide From The IRS? Target San Diego County, California

The IRS is using its extensive Big Data resources to pin-point their investigations to the wealthiest areas in San Diego County, California. The idea being that anyone who is selected for investigation in these areas will result in a higher tax liability than those who live in less affluent areas. The government is looking for non-filers, persons engaged in on-line and virtual currency transactions, businesses cheating or delinquent on employment taxes and individuals with undisclosed foreign bank accounts.


When a taxpayer does not file and the IRS has information statements indicating a filing requirement, the IRS uses the data to file a return on behalf of the taxpayer if there is a projected balance owed. In 2012, the IRS used information statements to file 803,000 Read more

How The IRS Turned Carole Hinders’ Life Upside Down

Iowa restaurant owner’s fight against the IRS gains national attention.

A restaurant owner in northwest Iowa has landed in the national news spotlight over her fight with the federal government. Carole Hinders who at the time was 67 years old and a grandmother has operated Mrs. Lady’s Mexican Food in Arnolds Park, Iowa for 38 years.

Nowadays it is most notable for a small business to be in operation for 38 years – especially if it is a restaurant which we all know “come and go”. Even more notable for Ms. Hinders was that she was always in full compliance with her tax obligations. But despite her clean tax record, on May 22, 2013 while settling into a crossword puzzle with her grandchildren she was visited at her home by a pair of IRS agents who stated that they had closed her Read more

U.S. Treasury Publishes Official FBAR Exchange Rates for 2014

Anyone filing an “FBAR” (Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts – FinCEN Form 114) or IRS Form 8938 (Statement of Foreign Financial Assets) for calendar year 2014 will be pleased to know that the official exchange rates for 2014 have been published. As U.S. law states that no other exchange rate is permitted, it is really helpful to have these exchange rates available so early in January.

Exchange rates for other currencies can be found by clicking here.

The rates for the major foreign currencies are listed below:


Read more

Beware! Your Hobby Business Could Land You In Tax Court

Your hobby business could land you in Tax Court – avoid IRS pitfalls by how you structure your small business.

Many people successfully develop a hobby into a going concern and actually receive income from it. That income must always be reported and taxes paid on that money regardless of your situation. If you leave that hobby as a hobby, under the tax law, you are not allowed to deduct any of the losses incurred by activity in that hobby. That is the reason most people turn their hobbies into businesses once they start making money.

When Are Hobby Losses Deductible?

By showing that your pursuit of your “hobby” is an activity engaged in for profit, you may be Read more

Is Social Security Taxable?

A classic case of the government giveth and the government taketh away.

One of the most common web-search phrases entered is this: “Is social security taxable”? The answer: It all depends on your income and filing status. If you file taxes as an individual and your combined income — that’s your adjusted gross income plus one half of your annual Social Security benefit — is less than $25,000, you won’t pay federal income taxes on your benefits.

But once you get past that $25,000 mark, that’s when you start seeing taxes. People who earn between $25,000 and $34,000 could have up to half of their benefits taxed, and people Read more

IRS Strikes Out Darryl Strawberry For Outstanding Tax Debt

IRS to auction Darryl Strawberry’s deferred Mets salary. A minimum bid of $550,000 has been set for the January 20, 2014 auction which will offer a deferred compensation agreement that was part of Strawberry’s 1985-90 contract with the Mets.

Darryl Strawberry, the former MLB All-Star, New York Mets and Yankees star who has faced tax problems owes over $550,000 when totaling California state and IRS back taxes. Strawberry was well known as a home-run hitter with a large presence in the batters box.

Darryl is well known for leading the Mets to a World Series win in 1986 and the Yankees to championships in 1996, 1998 and 1999. But when it came to the IRS – it was three strikes and he’s out! Read more