Husband and Wife Sentenced for Tax Defiance Scheme
ATLANTA – Timothy Thomas, 51, and Mary Beth Thomas, 47, of Jackson County, Ga., have been sentenced for their respective roles in a criminal tax scheme.
“For over a decade, these two failed to file their federal tax returns and sent in a blizzard of obstructive correspondence to the IRS,@ said United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “Individuals who seek to obstruct the tax system and cheat hardworking taxpayers will be exposed and prosecuted.”
“The term voluntary compliance means that each of us is responsible for filing a tax return when required and for paying the correct amount of tax,” stated Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation, Veronica Hyman-Pillot. “That responsibility should not be taken lightly. The defendants chose to take extreme measures in order not to file and pay taxes and they are now convicted with a prison term to serve.”
According to United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court: In the 1990s, Timothy and Mary Beth Thomas, who were married and jointly owned and operated a deck and patio construction business in Maysville, Ga., stopped filing federal income tax returns. They then hired American Rights Litigators (ARL), an organization that sold and promoted tax defiance schemes, to send obstructive and harassing materials to the IRS on their behalf. The IRS repeatedly sent notices to the couple notifying them that they had to pay their federal income taxes and that they had to comply with the tax laws.
After the IRS shut down ARL as a result of fraudulent anti-tax actions, Timothy and Mary Beth Thomas continued to send a variety of obstructive, frivolous and harassing documents to IRS and Department of Treasury officials instead of paying their taxes. These documents included statements that they were not United States citizens but instead were AAmerican citizens@; that they were not subject to the federal income tax laws; and that paying income tax was voluntary. At one point, Timothy Thomas sent a letter to the personal residence of an IRS revenue agent that stated he was “a non-tax payer” and then mailed the IRS a letter stating that a commercial lien had been filed against two IRS employees.
Finally, after a decade of not filing tax returns, the couple submitted four false tax returns claiming over $1,000,000 in fraudulent refunds from the IRS. That same year, they also submitted fictitious financial instruments to the federal government, to include a document purporting to be a $100 billion private registered bond, and instructed the government to use this bogus bond to pay any of their debts to the government.
Timothy Thomas, 51 of Jackson County, Ga., was sentenced to serve two years in federal prison. Mary Beth Thomas, 47, also of Jackson County, Ga., was sentenced to ten months in federal prison by United States District Judge Thomas W. Thrash, Jr. On May 10, 2013, Timothy Thomas pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to defraud the Internal Revenue Service and Mary Beth Thomas pleaded guilty to one count of wilfully failing to file an income tax return.
Despite earning substantial money from their business, Timothy Thomas and Mary Beth Thomas failed to pay over $350,000 in federal income taxes from 2003 to 2012. At sentencing, the couple was ordered to pay $506,350.57 in back taxes, interest, and penalties to the IRS.
In a separate case, Timothy Thomas’s brother, Stephen Paul Thomas, 47, and Patricia Denese Anderson, 52, both of Lawrenceville, Ga., were convicted for a similar tax defiance scheme and they were both sentenced January 3, 2013, here in the Northern District of Georgia. Stephen Paul Thomas was sentenced to five years in prison and Patricia Denese Anderson was sentenced to four years, three months in federal prison.
This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation.
Assistant United States Attorneys Sally B. Molloy and Thomas J. Krepp prosecuted the case.
For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the home page for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia Atlanta Division is http://www.justice.gov/usao/gan/.