Tax evasion Feed

To be, or not to be, a tax cheat, that is the question that William Shakespeare might have asked himself. It seems he answered, "To be." One version of Hamlet's soliloquy from season one of the brilliant Canadian comedy/drama "Slings and Arrows." Click image to watch the full clip on YouTube. In commemorating the 400th anniversary of The Bard's death today, we rightly celebrate his literary genius. But he also was a mere mortal. And as such, according to research from Aberystwyth University in the United Kingdom, Shakespeare was prosecuted for evading taxes and for hoarding grain during a famine... Read more →


Diane L. Kroupa was appointed as judge to the U.S. Tax Court in June 2013. Her term was supposed to have run for 15 years, but in June 2014 she retired early. This week Kroupa, 60, was indicted on two counts each of tax evasion, filing false returns and obstruction of an IRS audit. Her husband, Robert E. Fackler, 62, also was indicted on the same six tax-related charges. The couple is accused of understating their income by approximately $1 million on tax filings for the 2004 through 2010 tax years. Much of that too-low amount was arrived at by... Read more →


When the hubby and I head to a sporting event where only young fans are given freebies, say a team-logo cup or a bobble-head doll, we joke that we should be able to rent a kid or two so we could get the goodies. Yes, we would take sports-related candy etc. from children! This baby didn't hamper dad's ability to snag a foul ball. Plus, he provides his parents with several potential tax saving options. Click image to see MLB video of the catch and story about the ensuing controversy. Well, one Missouri man allegedly took our jesting approach to... Read more →


There are very few times when folks are on the Internal Revenue Service's side, but this might just be one of them. The IRS has slapped pharmaceutical bad boy Martin Shkreli with a tax lien totaling more than $4.6 million. Former pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli in happier times. Shkreli became a global villain last year when he jacked up the U.S. market price of Daraprim from $13.50 per pill to $750 per pill overnight, a 5,556 percent increase. The anti-parasitic drug is used in AIDS treatment and at was produced by Turing Pharmaceuticals, which Shkreli founded and served as chief... Read more →


Here in the United States, the income gap between the very wealthy and the rest of us is getting a lot of attention, thanks in large part to the Democratic presidential nominee race. Sen. Bernie Sanders has made the wealth gap a key part of his effort to dislodge former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton from the front-runner spot. Image source: ZMEScience But the battle is waging far beyond the U.S. borders and the 2016 presidential campaign. Global inequity off the charts: There's also a global inequality crisis, says Oxfam in a new report, and it is reaching new extremes.... Read more →


Irwin Schiff, the man who mainstreamed the tax protester movement, has died. His family said he passed away on Oct. 16 at a Fort Worth, Texas, hospital affiliated with the federal prison where he was serving, yet again, time for tax evasion. The cause was lung cancer. He was 87. The latest prison sentence was Schiff's third, all of them connected with his claim that income taxes are unconstitutional. Schiff made his anti-tax case in his books, including Federal Mafia: How It Illegally Imposes and Unlawfully Collects Income Taxes (1992); The Great Income Tax Hoax: Why You Can Immediately Stop... Read more →


Tax evasion is a global problem. Around the world, countries are struggling to make sure that their citizens are paying the taxes they owe. Here in the United States, we try both the stick (audits and even criminal prosecution in some cases) and the carrot (tax breaks) to encourage compliance. The Internal Revenue Service has sweetened the tax reporting pot, especially for those who are hiding their funds in out-of-country accounts. While many tax havens are in tropical locales, you can find places to hide money from the tax man all over the world. For some, the United States is... Read more →


Computers and taxes are inseparable. Most of us use our computers to file our taxes every year. The Internal Revenue Service relies on its computers, which it keeps telling Congress it needs money to upgrade, to process those millions of electronically completed and filed returns. Now some computer scientists are working on an algorithm that could help catch some tax cheats. Partnership tax shelter troubles: Specifically, researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the nonprofit technology research and development organization Mitre Corporation, are focusing on a certain type of tax shelter used by partnerships. "We see the tax code... Read more →


Somebody is $11.6 million richer and somebody else (or some company) is in big trouble with the Internal Revenue Service. Sorry for the vagueness, but that's basically how things work when you rat out tax cheats. The feds are eager to get the scoop on whoever is not paying up, but the whistleblowers often don't want the world to know who they are. As for the identity of the alleged tax evaders, we're at the mercy of Uncle Sam's willingness to announce his whistleblower-assisted collection success. What we do know about this latest case comes from attorneys Stephen Kohn and... Read more →


As Greece continues its efforts to get its finances in order, the country still is struggling with tax collection. Many businesses throughout the Mediterranean nation try to do as much business as possible in cash. The lack of record keeping for cash transactions makes it easier for them to avoid paying tax. Apparently, though, it's not just sellers of goods at Greek markets who are looking for ways to skirt the country's taxes. A component of a respected cultural institution has come under scrutiny. Greek officials have launched a tax fraud inquiry into one of the country's most visited archaeological... Read more →


You can't blame tax cheats if one of Martha and the Vandellas' biggest hits has been playing on a loop in their heads of late. Thanks to a new global effort, tax evaders will have nowhere to run to, nowhere to hide. Click image to view Martha and the Vandellas YouTube video. Crossing borders to chase down tax cheats: Tax Inspectors Without Borders, or TIWB, is a new initiative from the United Nations (UN) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Its goal, is as its name indicates, is to send trained tax professionals from richer OECD nations... Read more →


UPDATE, April 7, 2017: Michael Sorrentino is in tax trouble. Again. Mike, or "The Situation" as he was known when he was one of the stars of the MTV hit "Jersey Shore", and his brother Marc were indicted Friday, April 7, 2017, on additional charges of alleged tax evasion. As noted in this post from 2015, the Sorrentino brothers were indicted in 2014 for tax offenses and conspiring to defraud the United States. Under the new charges, Michael now also faces charges of tax evasion and structuring funds to evade currency transaction reports. Marc is now also charged with falsifying... Read more →


The economy has picked up, but times are still tough for many, including Uncle Sam. He loses millions every year in tax money because people don't pay what they owe. Some of these so-called tax gap losses come from accounts U.S. taxpayers have in other countries. The Internal Revenue Service has been trying for years to locate these accounts and get the taxes due. Remember, we have a worldwide tax system instead of, like most other nations, a territorial tax system. Territorial vs. worldwide taxes: Under a territorial system, taxes are paid to the country in which the money is... Read more →


About the only thing that gets people more worked up than the amount tax they pay is the amount of tax that others don't pay, specifically because the nonpayers are cheating on their returns. That's why the Internal Revenue Service has a whistleblower program, where you can turn in suspected tax cheats. If your information pans out, you might even collect a nice reward. The United States is not alone in offering financial incentives for leads on tax scofflaws. Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the United Kingdom's version of our IRS, also pays for information on tax dodgers and... Read more →


The Vatican takes scripture seriously, especially Mark 12:17. "Jesus said to them, 'Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's.' And they marveled at him." It's not quite amazement, but it is definitely interesting to see the Holy See signing on to the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act. Panoramic photo of St. Peter's Square, the basilica and obelisk, from Piazza Pio XII in Vatican City courtesy I, Dfmalan via Wikimedia CC. FATCA, FBAR facts: Known in tax-speak at FATCA, this federal law generally requires U.S. citizens and resident aliens to report any... Read more →


You've got to give props to Italian tax officials for their persistence. Last fall, Italy's highest court overturned the tax evasion convictions of fashion icons Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, whose luxe label bears their surnames. That, however, has not deterred Italian tax collectors. Now they are going after high-end jewelers Paolo and Nicola Bulgari. The brothers, whose watches and bracelets adorn the wrists of the world's wealthy, are accused of tax evasion. An item from the new Bulgari, or BVLGARI in the trademarked classical Latin lettering that appears in their packaging and ads, line of Serpenti jewelry. Click image... Read more →


It's here! The greatest day in motorsports. It starts early for Formula One fans in the United States. We set our alarm clocks to watch those multimillion dollar wheeled rockets maneuver the streets of magnificent Monte Carlo, Monaco. Click image to view Formula1.com's onboard camera capture of $155 million dollar man Lewis Hamilton's Monaco Grand Prix pole winning run. Midday the green flag drops on the Greatest Spectacle in Racing, the Indianapolis 500. Then late afternoon racing turns to night driving at Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina, where NASCAR holds the Coca-Cola 600, its longest race. You now know... Read more →


Everything is bigger in Texas. While millions of Americans were filing their annual tax returns on April 15, Internal Revenue Service lawyers were in Dallas Bankruptcy Court filing what is believed to be a record $3.23 billion in tax liens against a Dallas man and his late brother's estate. Sam Wyly and his older brother Charles, who died in a car crash in 2011, were well-known Dallas businessmen, philanthropists and at one point very rich. They amassed fortunes buying, expanding and then selling companies, including Bonanza and Ponderosa steakhouses, Michaels arts-and-crafts stores, Green Mountain Energy and Sterling Software. In 2006,... Read more →


This post was reviewed and some links updated on Thursday, April 6, 2017. It's one thing to make an innocent mistake on your taxes, or to overlook a tax break that could lower what you owe Uncle Sam. Those tax sins of omission are costly, but usually won't invoke the ire of the Internal Revenue Service. When you intentionally disregard tax law, however, such willful neglect will get you in real trouble. The IRS defines willfulness as a voluntary, intentional violation of a known legal duty, specifically your tax filing and payment responsibilities. Such intentional tax violations could lead to... Read more →


It's that time of year again. No, I'm not talking about the rapidly approaching tax-filing deadline. (Yikes, can we slow down that countdown clock in the right column a bit?!) I'm talking about Congress' annual posturing about federal employees with overdue federal income tax bills. Don't get me wrong. I'm not giving federal workers a pass on paying, as the phrase goes, their fair share of taxes. Everyone who owes needs to pay their Internal Revenue Service bills. And the 2014 tax bills owed by civilian workers paid by Uncle Sam amount to $1.41 billion. That's an increase over 2013's... Read more →