FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
TUESDAY, APRIL 12, 2005
TDD (202) 514-1888
UNITED STATES SEEKS TO STOP BUFFALO-AREA MEN
FROM PREPARING INCOME TAX RETURNS FOR OTHERS
Defendants Alleged Misconduct May Have Cost the Federal Treasury
More Than $2.2 Million
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Justice Department today asked a federal court to permanently bar three New York defendants from preparing federal income tax returns for others: Brian Duffek, of Orchard Park; Patrick OConnor, of Lake View; and their company, Duffek, OConnor & Associates, Inc., of Hamburg. The government also sought an order directing the defendants to provide the government their customers names, telephone, and Social Security numbers, as well as their mailing and e-mail addresses.
The governments complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York in Buffalo, alleges that the defendants prepared customers income tax returns claiming improper deductions for fictitious or inflated charitable contributions and employee expenses.
The complaint alleges that Duffek and OConnor have been income tax return preparers since the late 1990s and prepared more than 1,900 tax returns for tax years 2000 through 2002. The government alleges the defendants prepared returns improperly claiming deductions for fictitious or inflated unreimbursed employee expenses for work clothes, teaching and coaching supplies, student and athlete rewards, and cellular telephone expenses. The government estimates that the returns that Duffek and OConnor prepared for the 2000 through 2002 tax years alone may have cost the United States Treasury more than $2.2 million.
The Justice Department is working vigorously to stop the preparation and filing of the false or fraudulent returns that unfairly shift the tax burden to honest American taxpayers, said Eileen J. OConnor, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Departments Tax Division. People who hire others to prepare their returns should review their returns carefully to make sure that they are true, correct, and complete.
The governments complaint is part of an ongoing crackdown on return preparers who are giving false advice. The government has filed numerous lawsuits seeking injunctions against return preparers who prepare false or fraudulent federal tax returns. More information about these cases is available at: http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/taxpress2004.htm and http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/taxpress2005.htm. More information about the Tax Division is available at: http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/index.html.