WASHINGTON – Robert David Forsyth, of Las Vegas, pleaded guilty today in federal district court to count one of a federal indictment charging him with income tax evasion, the Justice Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced. Forsyth was indicted for tax crimes in April 2012.
According to court documents, from 1999 through 2008, Forsyth worked as a physician and earned income from a variety of sources, including his medical practice, expert witness fees, and Social Security benefits beginning in 2002. Forsyth failed to file an individual income tax return from 1999 through 2008, however. In fact, according to the indictment, Forsyth has not filed an income tax return since the 1994 tax year.
According to papers filed as part of the plea agreement, instead of filing tax returns and paying his taxes, Forsyth, a Canadian citizen and U.S. permanent resident alien, admitted that he closed all of his personal bank accounts and used a third party business to cash his paychecks. Forsyth also used the same third party business to make payments on his behalf, including his American Express credit card bills. Forsyth made extensive use of cash including using cash to pay personal expenses in an effort to avoid detection.
According to court documents, throughout the years that Forsyth evaded payment of his taxes, he used income that he earned to fund his own lifestyle. Instead of paying the IRS, Forsyth spent money on gambling, luxury items, and hotel accommodations in San Jose, Costa Rica and Bangkok, Thailand. Forsyth admitted to taking trips to Costa Rica, Thailand and Mexico rather than pay his tax liabilities.
Forsyth’s actions resulted in a tax loss to the United States, including interest and penalties, of over $600,000. As part of his plea agreement, Forsyth has agreed to pay restitution to the IRS in full, including $50,000 prior to his sentencing, which is scheduled for April 22, 2013, before U.S. District Judge Philip Pro at the federal courthouse in Las Vegas.
Forsyth faces a maximum possible sentence of five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
The case was investigated by the Criminal Investigations Division of the IRS and was prosecuted by Tax Division Trial Attorney Mark L. Williams and former Tax Division Trial Attorney Stephanie Courter.