Metro-East Men Sentenced on Tax Fraud and False
Two metro-east residents were sentenced today in the United States District Court in East St. Louis, for participating in a conspiracy to defraud the United States and evade the payment of federal income taxes, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced. Robert Todd McKinney, 43, and his brother John Quinn McKinney, 40, were both sentenced to 57 months imprisonment.
Court documents indicate that the McKinney brothers owned and operated McKinney Hauling, a construction business located in East St. Louis, Illinois. In 2003, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) began pursuing the brothers for unpaid taxes. The McKinney brothers evaded the payment of their tax obligations for the tax years 1999-2000, and 2002-2006, by diverting business income from McKinney Hauling into nominee bank accounts, which were used to pay personal and household expenses. Robert and John McKinney also admitted lying to federal officials about their business income and their home addresses. Belinda and Chamethele McKinney each pled guilty to falsifying mortgage loan documents while purchasing real estate - solely in their own names - so that business income earned by the husbands could be diverted into assets owned exclusively by their wives, thereby avoiding a combined IRS tax lien of $2,465,089.74, including penalties and interest. The home owned by John and Chamethele McKinney was featured in a Belleville News-Democrat feature dated October 28, 2007, entitled “The McKinneys of Autumn Oaks: Living in a Dream Home.”
Robert Todd McKinney was also sentenced to 3 years of supervised release, ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $952,705.52 to the Internal Revenue Service, and ordered to pay $300 as a special assessment to the court.
John Quinn McKinney was further sentenced to 3 years of supervised release, ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $1,512,384.22 to the Internal Revenue Service, and ordered to pay $500 as a special assessment to the court.
The sentencing for Belinda Cheri McKinney, wife of Robert Todd McKinney, is set for December 13, 2011. The sentencing for Chamethele McKinney, wife of John Quinn McKinney, is not yet set.
The investigation was conducted by agents from the Internal Revenue Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Human Services. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Liam Coonan and Steven D. Weinhoeft.