U.S. Attorney Patrick Miles announced on Friday, February 15, that a Lansing man could be facing fines of $250,000 and three years in prison for a tax evasion scheme, according to a news report on Mlive.com. The Lansing businessman, 49-year-old George Adatsi, pleaded guilty in federal court to a felony tax offense, obstructing the IRS.
A media release indicates that Adatsi “grossly” under reported employees’ wages, and that he claimed he did not have the funds to pay taxes to the IRS after hiding his assets. The money had already been collected from employees, according to Special Agent in Charge Erick Martinez. Adatsi owned HSMI (Health Staffers of Michigan, Inc.) and HSI (Health Staffers, Inc.) according to court officials.
Adatsi admitted that from 2004 to 2008, he filed false federal tax returns. He also admitted that he withheld FICA (Social Security and Medicare) taxes from 2001 to 2003 employees’ paychecks of more than $121,000, but did not turn them over to the Internal Revenue Service. Authorities revealed in the media release that Adatsi also admitted to hiding assets intentionally in order to avoid paying the IRS.
In filing the 2004 to 2008 tax returns, Adatsi allegedly reported gross wages paid to HSMI employees which were less than what the employees were actually paid; in doing so, he also under reported FICA and income tax withheld from these wages.
Adatsi will be sentenced at a future date; he could face a $250,000 fine and up to three years in prison, the maximum penalty for obstructing the IRS.
Michigan federal crime attorneys know that the penalties for those convicted of federal offenses are harsh. In order to obtain the best possible outcome, it is critical to hire a competent and experienced lawyer. Guilty or innocent, your rights must be protected.
If you are under investigation or have been charged with federal tax fraud or any offense involving the theft of money or property, consult with a talented Michigan criminal defense lawyer.