WASHINGTON – Doreen Hendrickson of Commerce Township, Mich., was arrested today following an indictment by a federal grand jury for criminal contempt, the Justice Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced.
Hendrickson and her husband, Peter Hendrickson, filed tax returns for 2002 and 2003 on which they claimed more than $20,000 in fraudulent tax refunds. These returns were based on the frivolous argument set forth in Peter Hendrickson's book, Cracking the Code, that only federal, state and local government employees are liable for the payment of income taxes. In May 2007, as part of a lawsuit against the Hendricksons filed by the department's Tax Division, U.S. District Judge Nancy G. Edmunds in Detroit entered a permanent injunction that barred the Hendricksons from filing additional false tax returns. Judge Edmunds also ordered the Hendricksons to file amended 2002 and 2003 returns. According to the indictment, Doreen Hendrickson violated this injunction by failing to file amended 2002 and 2003 tax returns and by filing a false 2008 tax return that was based on the arguments in her husband's book.
An indictment is merely an accusation, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.
This case was investigated and is being prosecuted by Trial Attorneys Melissa S. Siskind and Jeffrey B. Bender of the Tax Division, with the assistance of IRS-Criminal Investigation.