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NEWS RELEASE

OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY

WESTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI


MATT J. WHITWORTH


Contact Don Ledford, Public Affairs ● (816) 426-4220 ● 400 East Ninth Street, Room 5510 ● Kansas City, MO 64106

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html


APRIL 15, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


FORMER TAX PREPARER PLEADS GUILTY TO

$1 MILLION TAX FRAUD


            KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Matt J. Whitworth, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced today that a former Kansas City, Mo., tax preparer pleaded guilty in federal court to fraudulently preparing nearly 300 tax returns that falsely claimed more than $1 million in business losses for his clients.


            Donald Bushnell, 56, of Kansas City, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Gary A. Fenner on Tuesday, April 14, 2009, to the charge contained in an April 11, 2008, federal indictment.


            Bushnell was the owner of Bushnell Contract and Labor Service, a sole proprietorship that prepared individual federal income tax returns. By pleading guilty, Bushnell admitted that he prepared false income tax returns in order to obtain either inflated refunds or reduced taxation for his clients. Bushnell claimed business losses for his clients on forms submitted to the IRS, thereby reducing their taxable income. In reality, Bushnell’s clients did not maintain businesses and did not incur any business losses. Bushnell did not inform his clients of those misrepresentations, nor did he have authority from his clients to engage in those misrepresentations.


            Bushnell prepared 272 false and fraudulent federal tax returns from Jan. 9, 2001, to June 6, 2005, for a total tax loss to the United States of approximately $1,088,720.


            This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney William L. Meiners. It was investigated by IRS-Criminal Investigation.


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This news release, as well as additional information about the office of the United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, is available on-line at

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html