WILTON ATTORNEY WHO FILED FALSE TAX RETURNS
AND OBSTRUCTED THE IRS SENTENCED TO FEDERAL PRISON
David B. Fein, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that JOSEPH COLBERT, 44, of Wilton, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Robert N. Chatigny in Hartford to two months of imprisonment, followed by one year of supervised release, for filing false tax returns and for obstructing the Internal Revenue Service. COLBERT will serve the first six months of his supervised release term confined to his home. COLBERT also was ordered to pay a $15,000 fine and to perform 150 hours of community service.
According to court documents and statements made in court, COLBERT, an attorney, filed false federal tax returns in 2006, 2007 and 2008. In each of the returns, COLBERT falsely claimed that he had sustained thousands of dollars in losses on a rental property in New Jersey when, in fact, the New Jersey property was not a rental property but was exclusively for his personal use. On his 2006 return, COLBERT also claimed a business loss of $25,265 relating to a consulting and legal software business when, in fact, he had not sustained a loss. On his 2007 return, COLBERT also falsely claimed a casualty loss of $112,954 when, in fact, he had not sustained a loss but had incurred expenses relating to the renovation of his residence.
In total, COLBERT underpaid his federal tax obligation by more than $133,000.
On March 27, 2012, COLBERT pleaded guilty to one count of subscribing a false tax return. In pleading guilty, COLBERT also admitted that he sought to obstruct the IRS by making false statements during a 2010 audit of his tax returns.
COLBERT has paid restitution to the U.S. Treasury in the amount of $190,822.87, which includes back taxes, interest penalties.
This matter was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Christopher M. Mattei.
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