FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 2001
TDD (202) 514-1888
NEW YORK COUPLE CHARGED WITH INCOME TAX EVASION
CENTRAL ISLIP, NEW YORK - A federal Grand Jury in Central Islip, New York, yesterday indicted Louis and Betty Capolino, of New York, New York, on five counts of income tax evasion for three separate years.
The indictment charges that the Capolinos evaded their own substantial federal tax liability in 1994 and 1995. The indictment further alleges that the Capolinos evaded corporate income tax for El-Cee Trucking and El-Cee Enterprises, two corporations owned and operated by the Capolinos, in 1994, 1995 and 1996. The indictment alleges that the Capolinos diverted substantial corporate receipts from their corporations to a second corporate bank account of El-Cee Trucking, which they failed to disclose to the accountants who prepared the corporate tax returns. The diverted corporate receipts were thus unreported on the corporate returns. The indictment further alleges that the Capolinos paid numerous personal expenses using funds from their corporations, including substantial moneys from the undisclosed corporate account, and claimed that these personal expenses were business expenses. The Capolinos failed to report the personal expenditures as income on their individual tax returns.
"Prosecuting people who violate our tax laws is how we defend the integrity of our tax system and protect the vast majority of honest, tax-paying Americans from those who would otherwise leave them to pick up the tab," said Eileen J. O'Connor, Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justices' Tax Division.
If convicted, the Capolinos would face maximum penalties of 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each count. Additionally, they could be required to file accurate returns and to pay all overdue taxes together with any penalties and interest the IRS might assess.
Litigation of the case has been assigned to Eric Witiw and David Williams, Trial Attorneys with the Criminal Enforcement Section of the Tax Division of the United States Department of Justice. The case was investigated by criminal investigators with the Internal Revenue Service.
In all cases, an indictment merely serves as an accusation, and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty by evidence sufficient to convince a court beyond a reasonable doubt.