The Department of Justice Tax Division’s Acting Deputy Assistant AG Stuart M. Goldberg recently announced that three individuals, two of them managers of a Michigan healthcare management company and one an executive assistant, have been indicted by a Flint federal grand jury in an alleged employment tax scheme.
The managers, Joseph DeSanto and Edward Cespedes, are charged with failing to pay over payroll taxes to the IRS. Gerri Avery, executive assistant responsible for payment expenses, is charged with attempting to obstruct IRS laws.
The healthcare management services company is located in Southfield and operates under the name Integrated HCS Practice Management. According to the indictment, during the period from October 2013 to February 2014 DeSanto and Cespedes failed to pay the full taxes deducted from employee’s paychecks over to the Internal Revenue Service. The misappropriated money was allegedly used by the two men for personal expenses and company operating expenses.
Gerri Avery is alleged in the indictment to have obstructed attempts by the IRS to collect past due payroll taxes over the period of July 2014 to July 2017 by providing IRS collection officials with materially false information.
If found guilty, DeSanto and Cespedes could face restitution, supervised release and monetary penalties in addition to a five-year statutory maximum prison term on each count. Avery also faces restitution, monetary penalties and supervised release along with a potential maximum prison sentence of three years.
The prosecutors in this case are Tax Division Trial Lawyers William Guappone and Mark McDonald. Those conducting the investigation into the defendants’ actions were IRS Criminal Investigation special agents.
Tax charges can be as serious as other criminal charges, and may result not only in fines and supervised release but lengthy prison terms. Anyone accused of crimes against the IRS should consult with an experienced and capable defense lawyer immediately in order to pursue the best result.