The Justice Department, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) announced that Matthew Bender, of Detroit, was convicted yesterday following a jury trial in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan of failing to appear at a bond hearing on July 2, 2013. The bond hearing had been set to adjudicate Bender's noncompliance with the conditions of his pretrial release on federal tax charges.
The evidence at trial showed that Bender attended a family reunion in Ohio and flew to Texas in the summer of 2013 after a warrant was issued for his arrest. Bender was apprehended by the U.S. Marshals Service on Aug. 13, 2013.
Bender was previously convicted by another Detroit jury in March 2014 of obstructing the IRS and nine counts of aiding and assisting in the preparation of false federal income tax returns. According to court documents and evidence produced at the March 2014 trial, Bender prepared over 3,000 tax returns between 2006 and 2011 and earned over $500,000 in tax preparation fees. However, Bender failed to report his own income to the IRS, either by filing false tax returns for himself or by failing to file his own tax returns at all. The evidence showed that Bender caused his customer’s tax refunds to be inflated by placing false deductions on their returns.
Following the most recent conviction, Bender remains detained pending sentencing for his convictions.
The case was investigated by special agents of IRS–Criminal Investigation and TIGTA. Trial Attorneys Kenneth Vert and Jeffrey McLellan for the Justice Department’s Tax Division prosecuted the case.