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    United States Attorney's Office
    Central District of California

    Thom Mrozek
    Public Affairs Officer

    (213) 894-6947
    thom.mrozek@usdoj.gov



    Return to the 2009 Press Release Index
    Release No. 09-036

    March 24, 2009

    FEDERAL COURT ORDERS ORANGE COUNTY TAX PREPARER
    TO STOP PREPARING FEDERAL INCOME TAX RETURNS

    SANTA ANA, Calif. – A federal judge has issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) against an Orange County tax preparer who allegedly prepared fraudulent tax returns for clients that claimed improper deductions that illegally reduced their tax liability.

    Sidney Binder, who resides in Irvine, was ordered to immediately cease preparing federal income tax returns, amended federal income tax returns and other related documents and forms for others. Additionally, the TRO prohibits Binder from representing customers before the Internal Revenue Service; advising, assisting, counseling or instructing anyone about the preparation of a federal tax return; and promoting tax fraud schemes.

    The order was issued last Friday by United States District Judge James V. Selna and became effective immediately. The TRO prevents Binder from preparing additional false returns during this tax season.

    Binder was preparing returns through SBT Financial Solutions, which has an office in Orange. The Justice Department sought the emergency order from the court, arguing that Binder prepared tax returns that improperly reduced his customers' tax liabilities through a scheme involving fraudulent partnerships and fabricated business expenses and personal expenses. In its application for the TRO, the government alleged that it audited 181 customers for whom Binder prepared false returns over a five-year period and discovered that fraudulent deductions led to $5,710,553 in taxes not being paid.

    In the TRO, Judge Selna found that the government demonstrated that Binder had repeatedly engaged in conduct subject to penalty under the Internal Revenue Code and engaged in other fraudulent or deceptive conduct that substantially interfered with the proper administration of the internal revenue laws.  The court issued the TRO after finding that the government had a high likelihood of success in its lawsuit and would be irreparably harmed without injunctive relief. Judge Selna further ordered Binder to show cause why a preliminary injunction should not be issued pending a trial on the merits of the United States' complaint for permanent injunctive relief.

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    Release No. 9-036
    Return to the 2009 Press Release Index