Tax Crimes Archives

Germany's "James Bond" on Trial for Tax Evasion

Former intelligence agent Werner Mauss is the latest celebrity under scrutiny for allegedly evading taxes from profits on offshore accounts. Mr. Mauss says the accounts were opened by intelligence agencies to fund covert operations worldwide, including averting a mafia poisoning attempt against a Pope, and operations involving hostage releases. Mr. Mauss is a mystery. He has several aliases and is a self-proclaimed master spy. He is believed to have worked extensively under cover for Germany's BND intelligence service as well as for other governments. Mr. Mauss' lawyers identify the client confidences Mr. Mauss must maintain and other problems with standard litigation given the secret nature of Mr. Mauss' work and identity. For more information, click here.

Chief of Staff May Serve Prison Time for Failure to Pay Income Taxes

What happens when the chief of staff to a Congressman (and former Democratic staff director for the Homeland Security Committee) fails to file or pay income tax for six or more years in a row? It appears, not much.

What Should I Do If My Tax Preparer is Arrested?

Filing tax returns can be stressful, which is one reason many taxpayers hire a trusted professional to handle their returns for them. But what happens if your tax preparer turns out to be less trustworthy than you thought?

Complete IRS "Dirty Dozen" List of Tax Scams for 2016

Tax season is here, and so are criminals ready to scam you out of your money or refunds. The IRS says, "Remember - if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."

IRS Issues Warning of Major Upswing in E-mail Tax Scams

After seeing phishing and malware incidents quadruple this tax season, the IRS issued a renewed warning to consumers to be wary of suspicious e-mails. They are designed to look like official e-mails from tax agencies, tax preparers, or tax preparation software companies and may ask for personal information related to refunds, filing status, transcripts, and personal identification numbers. Scammers then use the information to file false claims or steal the taxpayer's identity. These scams are also being sent via text messages.

IRS Increases Sophistication to Match Identity Criminals

The Internal Revenue Service has been working with the states and tax professionals to increase security for taxpayers. The IRS reminds taxpayers of scams to avoid as part of its "Dirty Dozen" series. Identity theft at tax season is the first on its list.

Identity Theft

Tax season is here and so are criminals who want to steal your identity. Tax-related identity theft occurs when someone misuses your Social Security number to file a tax return or to report earnings. Warning signs of misuse of your Social Security number include learning that a tax return has already been filed using your Social Security number, that you owe additional taxes, that your refund has been offset to pay other liabilities, or that you earned wages or self-employment income from an employer for whom you did not perform work.

VIDEO: What to do after being accused of tax crimes

Being accused of violating state or federal tax laws is a very stressful situation to be in. Not only are the consequences severe if you are found guilty, the state and federal tax systems are both extremely complex. This video explains what action a person should take immediately after being charged with tax crimes or being investigated for violating state or federal tax law.

California "Goes Criminal" with the Revenue Recovery and Collaborative Enforcement Team

On October 7, 2013, Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 576 into law, authorizing a pilot program to create the "Revenue Recovery and Collaborative Enforcement Team" (RRCET) consisting of an alliance primarily between the California Department of Justice (DOJ), the Franchise Tax Board (FTB), the State Board of Equalization (BOE), and the Employment Development Department (EDD) in an effort to combat "criminal tax evasion associated with the underground economy."

Tax Court remands case for IRS to consider an offer in compromise for effective tax administration

Last week, the Tax Court remanded a collection due process case to the IRS Appeals Office for consideration of an offer in compromise (OIC) on the grounds that the IRS had failed to adequately consider whether the OIC promoted effective tax administration. Bogart v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2014-46. The case involved a collection due process hearing for unpaid individual income tax liabilities where the taxpayers discovered that their bookkeeper and tax preparer had been embezzling funds from them. The Court found that the bookkeeper had perpetrated a fraud against the taxpayers, and that she had used the stolen funds to pay for her gambling addiction. The bookkeeper embezzled at least $116,000 from the taxpayers, and did not include those stolen funds in the taxpayers' gross income, which resulted in tax deficiencies for two years. The bookkeeper pleaded guilty to 10 counts of theft in the first degree and was sentenced to prison.

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