Defendants Plead Guilty to Tax Fraud Scheme
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Jose A. Gonzalez, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), announce that Scarlet Veres, and Steven M. Veres, III, both of Clermont, formerly of Broward County, pled guilty today before U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola, Jr. for their participation in a scheme to evade paying taxes on income received through their construction company following the 2004 and 2005 hurricanes.
Scarlet and Steven Veres each pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. At sentencing, the defendants face up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
According to court documents, Scarlet Veres and Steven M. Veres III, who was then a licensed general contractor, were the sole shareholders of Superior Contracting, Inc., a Broward County-based construction company. In 2005, Superior Contracting, Inc. received millions of dollars from contracts to make hurricane-related repairs, including a contract to make repairs at a condominium development in Fort Pierce. During 2005, the defendants diverted corporate receipts of Superior Contracting, Inc. for their own use. In order to conceal their diversion of corporate funds, the defendants falsified the profit and loss statement of Superior Contracting, Inc. by characterizing personal expenses, including the purchase of property in Parkland, the construction of their personal residence on the Parkland property, the purchase of a residence in Osceola County, and a $550,000 personal real estate investment as business expenses. The defendants further falsified the profit and loss statement by claiming that a $400,000 personal real estate investment was a repayment of a fictitious loan previously made to Superior Construction, Inc. Pursuant to their plea agreements, the defendants agreed to pay restitution to the Internal Revenue Service in the amount of $600,000.
Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the IRS-CI. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephanie Evans.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.