DOJ Tax has this press release, Tennessee Couple Plead Guilty to Tax Crimes, cryptically reporting a plea by two taxpayers, husband and wife, to two counts of willful failure to file income tax returns (Section 7203). In relevant part, the press release says:
Additionally, during the years in question, the Palmers maintained funds in an offshore bank account in the name of The Liahona LLC, an entity of which they were the sole members and managers. Due to the income they received during the prosecution years, the Palmers were required to file tax returns; however, they failed to do so.
It is unclear whether Liahona LLC was a domestic or a foreign entity. I did a Google search and found several Liahona LLCs in the U.S.
Apparently, the tax haven of choice for them was the Island of Nevis. Not the first time that tiny country has appeared on our radar screen.
For sentencing purposes, the key benefit of misdemeanors is that, with a one year max, the maximum sentence that can be imposed is 1 year times the counts of conviction -- here two counts. So the Palmers' plea caps their potential sentence at 2 years. Of course, given the pattern of sentencing (assuming this prosecution was really driven by the offshore account(s)), they are likely to get minimal, if any sentences, so the cap may not be that meaningful.
View Jack Townsend's opinion in its entirety on the Federal Tax Crimes blog site.
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