FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2005
TDD (202) 514-1888
FEDERAL COURT HALTS WASHINGTON STATE TAX-SCAM PROMOTION
Sham Trusts, False Claims Of Tax-Exempt Status
Used To Hide Income And Assets
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Justice Department announced today that a federal court has barred Raymond Leo Bell, of Yelm, Washington, and his two businesses, American Beauty Rose and The Best Way, Inc., from promoting two tax fraud schemes. In entering a preliminary injunction, Judge Robert J. Bryan, of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, found that the defendants “promote the use of sham business and family trusts as a means of fraudulently concealing income from the IRS.” The court also found that, in a second scheme, the defendants help customers falsely claim tax-exempt status and fabricate and inflate deductions “in a fraudulent attempt to evade income and employment taxes.”
The preliminary injunction prohibits the defendants from selling any tax shelter, plan, or arrangement that assists attempts to violate internal revenue laws or evade taxes. The court directed the defendants to notify their customers of the injunction and to give the Justice Department their customers’ names, mailing and e-mail addresses, Social Security numbers, and telephone numbers. The court also directed the defendants to provide the government with a complete list of all of the entities they created for their customers, all UCC filings made on behalf of their customers, and all requests for taxpayer identification numbers prepared for their customers.
“The Justice Department and the Internal Revenue Service are working diligently to stop the promotion of tax fraud,” said Eileen J. O'Connor, Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice's Tax Division. “People who sell or use tax fraud schemes are risking serious consequences, including criminal charges where appropriate."
Misuse of trusts tops the IRS's list of “Dirty Dozen” tax schemes: http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=120803,00.html. More information about the Justice Department's efforts against tax-scam promoters can be found at http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/taxpress2005.htm. Information about the Justice Department's Tax Division can be found at http://www.usdoj.gov/tax.