No one is beyond the certainty of taxes, as a priest for the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Jose, California, discovered last week. Hien Minh Nguyen was sentenced to 36 months in prison for taking cash and checks donated to the Diocese by parishioners and depositing them into his personal bank account to pay for personal expenses. The court found that the priest embezzled a total of $1.4 million from the Catholic Church and, by concealing the embezzlement from his return preparer, evaded over $500,000 in income taxes owed to the IRS.
A group of private business owners have filed suit in a dispute with the IRS over reimbursement for their involvement in a sting operation to identify people filing fraudulent tax returns. "I think it is unusual for the IRS to use a private business in a sting operation," Betty Williams wrote. "If the plaintiffs are not made whole, this is simply a very sad story." Learn more in the Northern California Record, here.
The IRS recently alerted employers to a dangerous new e-mail phishing scam involving false requests for payroll information made through "spoof" accounts. This scam "can result in the large-scale theft of sensitive data that criminals can use to commit various crimes, including filing fraudulent tax returns," said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.
The Internal Revenue Service Advisory Council (IRSAC) released its annual report today for 2016. Based on IRSAC's findings and discussions in 2016, the council made recommendations on topics including:
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued an urgent warning to tax professionals regarding yet another e-mail scam, this time involving a fake website related to the IRS' e-Services accounts.
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?
Gideon Misulovin, a former New York business man on trial for tax evasion and fraud in 1996, appeared in US federal court on July 17, 2015 for the first time in 19 years.
A tax preparer was recently convicted in U.S. District Court, Eastern District for aiding and assisting in the preparation and presentation of a false and fraudulent tax return. The defendant, Sarad Chand, admitted preparing false tax returns with inflated or false tax credits or deductions, frequently through the use of claiming unreimbursed employee business expenses or by creating Schedule Cs with false business income and expenses. The IRS examined over 900 returns prepared by the defendant finding an understatement of tax of over $2.7 million. The defendant has agreed to provide a list of all customers for whom he prepared federal tax returns or claims for refunds since January 1, 2012.
An estimated 40 percent of small businesses outsource payroll tasks to third-party payers, delegating the responsibility to withhold and pay over Federal employment taxes to the IRS. Unfortunately, some third-party payers withhold the tax through payroll, but instead of paying it to the IRS, they pay it to themselves! This scam may go undetected for a lengthy period of time before the employer becomes aware of the problem, particularly if the defrauding third party is sophisticated in presenting copies of documents that purport to prove the tax has been paid. Ultimately, when the IRS contacts the employer for the payment of tax, the employer suffers a great hardship because although the money was expended, the tax is still unpaid and due.
The Department of Justice has released the results of its ongoing efforts to identify and extinguish the practices of fraudulent tax return preparers and tax scheme promotors. In the press release, the DOJ describes its most recent activities in stopping violations of federal tax laws by professionals along with an update on injunctions obtained against hundreds of tax-return preparers.Click here to read the results from the Department of Justice.