WASHINGTON—Ronald James Davenport, of Chewelah, Wash., was convicted Tuesday of filing more than $20 billion in false liens against four federal government officials, the Justice Department and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) announced today. A federal jury in the Eastern District of Washington in Spokane returned guilty verdicts on all four counts of filing false retaliatory liens against government officials. The conviction came after a two-day trial before Judge Garr M. King of the District of Oregon, sitting in Spokane by special designation.
According to the evidence presented at trial, in December 2009, Davenport filed false liens against the then-U.S. Attorney and the Clerk of Court for the Eastern District of Washington, as well as an Assistant U.S. Attorney and an Internal Revenue Service Revenue officer. The liens were filed in the public records of Spokane County and Whatcom County, Wash. The defendant claimed in each lien that the victim owed him $5.184 billion and purported to attach all of the victim’s real and personal property as security for this debt. As proved at trial, the defendant chose these four victims on account of their service as government officials, namely their involvement in a civil lawsuit against Davenport for about $270,000 in unpaid tax liabilities.
Following his conviction, Davenport faces a potential maximum sentence of 40 years in prison and a fine of up to $1 million. Judge King has not set a sentencing date.
The case was investigated by TIGTA and prosecuted by Trial Attorneys Brian D. Bailey and Hayden M. Brockett of the Justice Department’s Tax Division. Both the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the District Court for the Eastern District of Washington were recused from the case.