Las Vegas Contractor Sentenced for Tax Evasion
Las Vegas, Nev. - Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada, and Byram Tichenor, Special Agent-in-Charge of IRS Criminal Investigation for Nevada and Utah, announced that MICHAEL A. LONG was sentenced today to two years in federal prison for his October 2001 conviction for Attempting to Evade and Defeat Tax, in violation of Title 26 United States Code, Section 7201. LONG was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas by Judge Lloyd D. George, who also ordered LONG to serve a three-year period of supervised release to follow the sentence of imprisonment, and ordered LONG to cooperate with the Internal Revenue Service to pay the back taxes he owes.
LONG, age 47, of Las Vegas, was the president and managing executive officer of Raneri and Long Roofing, Inc. and National Roofing, Inc., Nevada corporations which operated in Las Vegas. LONG was indicted by a federal Grand Jury on September 6, 2000, and charged with 73 counts of Concealment of Assets in Contemplation of Bankruptcy, False Statements, Conspiracy to Commit Money Laundering, Money Laundering, Making and Subscribing a False Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return, and Attempting to Evade and Defeat Tax. Under a plea agreement, LONG pled guilty to Count 71 charging him with Attempt to Evade and Defeat Tax.
In pleading guilty, LONG admitted that he willfully attempted to evade and defeat $194,548 in personal income tax for the years 1992 through 1996. Additionally, LONG admitted that from June 1993 until April 1995, he caused false quarterly Employer's Federal Tax Returns (Forms 941) to be filed for RANERI AND LONG ROOFING, INC., which did not correctly reflect total wages paid to employees. These returns did not include cash wages paid to employees totaling more than $950,000, and for which in excess of $350,000 tax was due the government.
Long also admitted that from June 1994 until January 1997 he caused false Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Returns to be filed for National Roofing, Inc., which did not reflect total wages paid to employees. LONG admitted that the unreported cash wages paid to employees amounted to $440,015, with more than $155,000 in taxes due the government.
According to Byram Tichenor, this case is one of many his agency has pursued and aggressively investigated in recent years. "As filing season rolls into high gear, the public needs to realize that income tax evasion is a serious crime with serious consequences," he says. "Taxes are the price we pay to live in a civilized society, and these types of cases not only protect our country and way of life, they also protect the vast majority of honest tax-paying citizens and contractors as well. Contractors who cheat on their payroll taxes gain an unfair advantage and are often able to underbid legitimate companies that play by the rules."
Information regarding the mission, background, and strategies of IRS Criminal Investigation may be obtained online at http:\\www.treas.gov/irs/ci.
The prosecution is the result of a lengthy investigation by special agents of the Criminal Investigation Division of the IRS. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ray Rukstele.