Richard H. Deane, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia;
Andre Martin, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service; and Theodore Jackson, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, announce that DARRYL EVANS, 35, of Stone Mountain, Georgia, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Willis B. Hunt, Jr., on federal charges of mail fraud and making false statements on a tax return. According to Deane and evidence presented in court:
EVANS was a personal injury attorney in Atlanta who obtained numerous clients by paying a chiropractor, F. Scott Culberson, for referring automobile accident patients who had been referred to Dr. Culberson by paid "runners." After Dr. Culberson's office was searched by federal agents in November 1997, EVANS began settling his clients' cases with insurance companies and then representing to his clients that he was withholding money from their share of the settlement to pay Dr. Culberson's outstanding chiropractic bills. Instead, in at least 90 cases, EVANS kept a total of about $81,775 that was supposed to be used to pay the chiropractic bills, rather than paying Dr. Culberson or giving the money to the clients. EVANS ultimately used the money for personal living expenses. The mail fraud count of the Criminal Information is based on the mailing of a specific insurance settlement check to EVANS office. EVANS also made false statements on his 1997 Federal income tax return. EVANS instructed his tax preparer to exclude about $75,000 in gross receipts from his law practice, claiming that he had additional expenses. In addition, because making referral payments is illegal under Georgia law and unethical under State Bar rules, EVANS disguised the more than $66,000 in referral payments he made in 1997 by presenting them to his accountant as legitimate business expenses such as investigative fees, phone expenses, and medical records.
EVANS was sentenced to serve 12 months in custody, followed by 2 years on supervised release. He was also ordered to pay $81,775 in restitution immediately and to perform up to 100 hours of community service. EVANS was also required to file amended tax returns and to cooperate with the IRS in assessing the back taxes, penalties, and interest he owes. EVANS has stopped practicing law and has filed a petition to surrender his Bar license. EVANS pleaded guilty to these charges on August 27, 2001.
This case was investigated by Special Agents of the Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Assistant United States Attorneys David E. Nahmias and Daniel P. Griffin prosecuted the case.
For further information please contact Richard H. Deane, Jr., United States Attorney or F. Gentry Shelnutt, Chief, Criminal Division, through Patrick Crosby, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Attorney's Office, at (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the HomePage for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Georgia is www.usdoj.gov/usao/gan.