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FORMER LAW FIRM PARTNER PLEADS GUILTY TO USING FABRICATED IRS DOCUMENT TO AVOID PAYING BACK TAXES

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 8, 2011

LOS ANGELES – An attorney who was a partner in the Century City offices of a national law firm has pleaded guilty to interfering with efforts by the Internal Revenue Service to collect well over $100,000 in federal income taxes the lawyer had not paid.

Michelle Renee Walker, 42, pleaded guilty yesterday to interfering with the administration of the IRS, specifically admitting that she provided the law firm with a falsified IRS document. The bogus document purported to lift a levy the IRS had placed on partnership payments from the law firm to Walker.

Walker pleaded guilty before United States District Judge George H. Wu, who is scheduled to sentence the defendant on June 20. At sentencing, Walker will face a statutory maximum sentence of three years in federal prison.

By pleading guilty, Walker admitted that she owed federal income taxes for the tax years 2006 through 2008, and that the unpaid taxes totaled more than $110,000 by February 2010. After the IRS served the law firm with a levy to collect any partnership payments to the attorney, Walker provided the general counsel of her law firm with a phony IRS form that purported to release the tax levy. The law firm cooperated with the investigation into the false documentation, and Walker subsequently resigned from the law firm.

The case against Walker was investigated by the Department of the Treasury, Treasury Inspector General For Tax Administration.

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Release No. 11-031

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