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FORMER MILL CREEK RESIDENT SENTENCED TO PRISON FOR FAILING TO FILE INCOME TAX RETURNS ON INCOME OF MORE THAN $1,000,000

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 13, 2006

HARRIS LEE HOLMGREN, 51, of Lido, New York, was sentenced today to eight months in prison and one year of supervised release in U.S. District Court in Seattle for Failure to File a U.S. Tax Return. According to the plea agreement, from 1998-2002, HOLMGREN lived in Mill Creek, Washington. He was self-employed as a roofing salesman, and earned $1,624,364 over those five years but failed to pay any taxes on his income. For purposes of sentencing, the lost tax revenue has been calculated to be as much as $324,872.

At sentencing, Magistrate Judge James P. Donohue told HOLMGREN, “One of our duties as citizens is to pay our taxes. Nobody likes paying taxes but it funds transportation, education and the defense duties of this country.”

Under the terms of the plea agreement, HOLMGREN must pay for the costs of prosecution, as well as any civil taxes, penalties and interest that may be owing for 1998-2002 as determined by the Internal Revenue Service.

HOLMGREN’s defense attorney argued for a sentence of probation, but Magistrate Judge Donohue rejected that request saying, “sentencing you to probation would encourage or condone similar activity as in this case.”

"In the last three years, almost 700 people have been prosecuted nationwide for willfully failing to file federal income tax returns, with around 80% of them being incarcerated in some fashion," said Sherree W. Preston, IRS Special Agent in Charge for Washington.

The HOLMGREN case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division (IRS-CID) and was being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ilene J.K. Miller and Assistant United States Attorney Lawrence Lincoln.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, Western District of Washington, at (206) 553-4110 or Daniel Wardlaw, Public Information Officer for IRS-CID, at (360) 696-7647 (x3).

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