Stratosphere Subcontractor Gets Federal Prison Time
Las Vegas, Nev. - Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada and Eileen J. O'Connor, United States Assistant Attorney General, Department of Justice Tax Division, announce that RONNIE LEE FORD, age 55, an accountant and former resident of Las Vegas, Nevada, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas, Nevada, to 57 months in federal prison for his guilty plea to Tax Fraud Conspiracy, Concealment of Bankruptcy Assets, and Tax Evasion. The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Kent Dawson. FORD was also ordered to pay more than $1.7 million in restitution to the United States, and ordered to serve three years of supervised release following his release from prison.
According to the court records, RONNIE LEE FORD, Secretary and Treasurer of Ramhorn Construction, Inc. and its successor, Dryifs, Inc., admitted that he and his partner, Bobby Allen, cheated the IRS and lied to the United States Bankruptcy Court in connection with the January 1997 bankruptcy filing of their company Ramhorn Construction, Inc. From September 1995 through September 1997, Ramhorn Construction, Inc. had a $12 million subcontract to provide an exterior coating to the outer wall of the Stratosphere Tower in Las Vegas. FORD and his co-conspirators made false statements to the IRS and U.S. Bankruptcy Court in order to conceal the true profits they made from the Stratosphere contract. Their fraud included the diversion of $1.4 million dollars to nominees and nominee bank accounts, the use of false business expenses, and an extensive use of cash to hide their true profits.
Co-defendant Bobby Allen was sentenced to 37 months in prison on June 13, 2003, for his guilty pleas to Tax Fraud Conspiracy and Bankruptcy Fraud. Co-defendant Stanley Greene also pleaded guilty to Tax Fraud Conspiracy and Bankruptcy Fraud, and will be sentenced in Las Vegas this Friday, September 12, 2003, by U.S. District Court Judge Roger L. Hunt.
The case was investigated by Special Agents with IRS Criminal Investigation in Las Vegas, and was prosecuted by United States Department of Justice Tax Division Trial Attorneys John Kaleba and Thomas W. Flynn