Your IRS Questions Answered Here…

Question: I’ve been getting notices from the IRS saying I owe them for back taxes. This is stressing me out and starting to affect other areas of my life. What should I do?

 

Answer:  Owing money to the IRS or State can be intimidating and throw your life out of whack but ignoring these notices will only make things worse. The IRS has several debt settlement options but it’s important to take action before they garnish your paycheck and/or levy your bank account.  One of these options is an installment agreement payment plan.

The IRS has 10 years to collect on a tax liability from the date you filed your return and are relentless when they think you have their money.  There are several types of installment agreements.  One of them, is called a “partial pay” installment agreement where it’s possible to reduce the total outstanding balance due to the IRS based on how much time is left on the 10 years to collect. The IRS does not “advertise” this option for obvious reasons. We know how to obtain this solution but you must take the first step and call us to see if you qualify.

You need a professional expert to help you deal with the IRS.  You can’t do this on your own, you’ll get crushed. As a matter of fact, going or talking to the IRS without representation could be the worst thing you can do. It’s like going to court without a lawyer. The IRS does not have your best interests at heart.

Swiss Bank’s Case Full of Holes

The Department of Justice Tax Division charged Switzerland’s oldest bank, Rahn+Bodmer Co, with conspiring to help US account holders evade their US tax obligations, file false tax returns, and otherwise defraud the IRS.

The Swiss bank admitted in court that between 2004 and 2012 they held undeclared accounts on behalf of 340 US taxpayers, who collectively evaded approximately 16.4 million dollars in US taxes. The assets held by the bank for undeclared US account holders went from 391 million dollars in 2004 to 550 million dollars in 2007, its peak year for undeclared assets.

The bank has agreed to pay 22 million dollars in restitution, forfeiture and penalties and to fully cooperate with the IRS in order to bring the tax evaders to justice. If the bank abides by all the terms of the agreement, the government will seek to dismiss the charges after three years.

Produce CEO Harvests Big Bounty Illegally for Himself

The former President and CEO of the Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market, Caesar DiCrecchio, was charged with wire fraud, identity theft, money laundering and tax evasion for embezzling over 7.8 million dollars.

DiCrecchio used company funds to pay 1.9 million dollars in rent for his New Jersey shore house. He converted into cash 1.1 million dollars in checks drawn on the Market’s bank account, and had 1.7 million dollars in checks issued to his friends and family. He had the Market pay his personal credit card expenses, converted $320,000 in checks payable to the Market into cash, and skimmed 2.6 million dollars in cash from the pay gate at the Market’s parking lot. He used a portion of that money to pay Market employees under the table. He also used Market funds for a $180,000 loan to a Market vendor which the vendor paid back directly to DiCrecchio.

DiCreccio hid the fraud by listing the money as expenditures for insurance, legal fees, snow removal and other legitimate expenses.

In addition to not reporting the income from the embezzled funds, from 2014 to 2017 DiCrecchio failed to report 2.1 million dollars in income, as well as a car allowance, a pension and consulting income. He faces a maximum of 102 years in prison and a fine of 2.5 million dollars.

Filing False Tax Returns with Stolen IDs Gets Woman Prison ID

Marien Torres-Acevedo was sentenced to 75 months in prison for her part in a scheme that included stealing identities and filing false tax returns with the stolen IDs.

From January 2015 to July 2016 Torres-Acevedo and two co-conspirators filed dozens of false tax returns that she admitted generated between 550,000 to 1.5 million dollars.

Torres-Acevedo was also held accountable for fabricating social media communications that she claimed were threatening to her and her family, but were discovered to have been created by her as a ploy for sympathy.

In addition to the prison sentence she has been ordered to pay $857,729.65 in restitution.

One co-conspirator was sentenced to 54 months in prison and the other was sentenced to three years probation and paid 2.1 million dollars in restitution and fines.

Good Grief Charlie Brown! Project Linus President Embezzles $400k from Charity

The former President of Project Linus, a nonprofit that provides handmade blankets for children who are seriously ill, has been sentenced to prison for wire fraud, mail fraud, money laundering and tax evasion as a result of stealing more than $400,000 from the organization.

Carol Babbitt was the organization’s national president from 2000 to 2016, and in 2010 began using company credit cards to pay for personal expenses including clothing, furniture, electronics, pet grooming, tickets for sporting events and personal travel. She covered her tracks by falsely classifying the expenditures in the organization’s books. In addition she failed to report the stolen funds on her tax returns.

Babbitt was sentenced to 30 months in prison and ordered to pay Project Linus $410,210 in restitution and $7,586 to the Illinois department of revenue.

That’s a Lot of Tacos – Owner of Mexican Restaurant Files False Tax Returns, Hides $2.5 Million in Sales

Juan Hurtado, the owner of five Pepe’s Mexican restaurant franchises in Chicago, pleaded guilty to filing false tax returns and underreporting his income by approximately 2.5 million dollars. From 2016 to 2018 Hurtado filed 11 false tax returns with the IRS. He also admitted to giving his accountants false sales reports that underreported the gross receipts and sales of his restaurants.

Hurtado faces up to three years in federal prison, plus restitution of unpaid taxes, penalties and fees to the IRS.

Trail of Blood Leads to Garbage Bags Stashed with Cash

A couple in Pennsylvania was sentenced to prison after police discovered more than $800,000 in cash in their home. Matthew and Kim Forney’s troubles began when their daughter’s boyfriend shot them in a domestic dispute. After the police arrived at the scene they discovered bloody footprints leading to a pool house that contained a large trash bag filled with cash. Later they found a gun safe with more bundles of cash.

From 2014 to 2017 the Forneys pocketed the cash and only deposited checks from their business sales into their business bank accounts. They only reported check and credit card sales on their tax returns. They maintained meticulous records and the cash found in their home was attached to business receipts.

The Forneys unreported income totaled $817,713, which resulted in $292,066 in unpaid taxes. Matthew Forney was sentenced to 12 months and one day in prison and his wife Kim was sentenced to 12 months.

The charges against the daughter’s boyfriend were dropped after a judge ruled certain evidence inadmissible in court.

Nike Employee Just Did It and Then Got Caught

Errol Andam, a former Nike marketing manager, has been charged with wire fraud, money laundering and making false statements on a tax return.

Andam managed the design, build-out and operation of pop-up retail venues for Nike, and in 2016 recruited a childhood friend to establish a company to design and build the venues for the company. Andam made sure his friend’s company was consistently awarded the contracts for these jobs, then proceeded to control his friend’s company’s financial operations, including invoices to Nike.

Andam created an alter ego, “Frank Little” to handle the Nike account and his friend’s Square credit card processing account, where Nike funds were deposited. He then had the funds from Square diverted to his own LLC.

As he got bolder, Andam began having sales at the pop-ups diverted directly into his own company. From 2016 to 2018 Andam diverted and embezzled almost 1.4 million dollars

He faces a maximum prison sentence of 30 years and fines of up to 4.5 million dollars.

The Ace at the Bank Caused Schemer’s Fall From Grace

Taressa Hightower, of Georgia, pleaded guilty to two counts of filing false tax returns in connection with bogus charitable organizations.

Between 2010 and 2015 Hightower received more than $650,000 from a bank in Boston for two non-profit organizations that claimed to serve underprivileged children in Atlanta, Georgia. The money Hightower received were the proceeds of an embezzlement scheme perpetrated by Palestine Ace, an employee of the bank, who was married to Jonathan Ace, a relative of Hightower’s. In exchange for the ‘donations’ Hightower agreed to return 25% of the money to the Aces as a secret kickback.

None of the funds were used for charitable purposes. Hightower spent the money on personal expenses and for 2013 and 2014 filed false personal and business tax returns. She claimed significant amounts of non-existent and inflated business expenses in order to lower her personal tax liability.

Palestine and Jonathan Ace were convicted of embezzlement in 2018 and sentenced to one and two years in prison, respectively.

Hightower faces a maximum sentence of up to three years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Embezzling Comptroller Gets Shipped to Prison

Between 2007 and 2019 the comptroller for Gulf-Dan Shipping, Deepak Jagtani, embezzled more than $7,000,000 dollars from the company.

Jagtani controlled payroll for Gulf-Dan and used his access to pay himself excessive salaries and benefits.

He also admitted to filing false tax returns from 2014 to 2017. He reported business losses from a fake catering business he claimed he and his wife owned in order to offset his income, and avoided paying $1,232,267 in federal income taxes.

The wire fraud charges earned Jagtani a 63 month prison sentence, and the charge for filing false tax returns resulted in a 36 month sentence. Both sentences will be served concurrently. Jagtani was also ordered to pay $7,000,000 in restitution to Gulf-Dan Shipping and $1,232,267 to the IRS.