Vermilion Woman sentenced to five months in prison for tax violations
Terry E. Branco was sentenced today to five months imprisonment for corruptly endeavoring to obstruct and impede the due administration of the federal tax laws, said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.
The sentence was imposed in Cleveland by United States District Judge James S. Gwin, who also ordered Branco to pay restitution of unpaid taxes totaling $47,475 for the years 2004 through 2007.
According to court records, Branco is 65 years old and resides in Vermilion, Ohio.
Branco previously pleaded guilty to an Information pursuant to a written plea agreement which described her course of conduct over several years, including the following. For tax years 2004 through 2007, Branco filed frivolous and false U.S. individual tax returns in which she stated that her total adjusted gross income for each year was zero dollars ($0). Her actual total adjusted gross income was $109,403, $87,440, $93,277 and $113,845 for the 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 tax years, respectively.
Branco also signed a form in 2006 on which she falsely claimed she was not a resident of the United States. In 2008, following an IRS audit and assessment of taxes owed, Branco sent a purported “commercial affidavit” to the IRS claiming that the IRS was not an agency of the United States, was “perpetuating a fraud,” and was “not licensed to do business.” She also stated that failure to rebut the affidavit would result in the “filing of a commercial lien, involuntary bankruptcy and/or tort claim.” Branco then filed a Notice of Default and Affidavit of Notice with a county recorder in Utah, reflecting an intent to encumber real estate owned by an IRS employee whose name was on notices sent to her by the IRS, according to the plea agreement.
The case was handled by Tax Division Trial Attorney Andrew P. Young and Assistant U.S. Attorney John M. Siegel, following investigation by the Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation, Akron, Ohio, and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, Cleveland, Ohio.