FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
FRIDAY, MAY 13, 2005
TDD (202) 514-1888
JUSTICE DEPARTMENT SUES TO STOP MARYLAND MAN FROM SELLING ALLEGED TAX-FRAUD SCHEMES
Westminster Man Accused Of Offering Customers Financial Incentives To Violate Federal Tax Laws
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Justice Department today asked a federal court to bar John Baptist Kotmair, Jr., of Westminster, Maryland, and his organization, “Save-a-Patriot Fellowship,” from selling alleged tax-fraud schemes. The civil injunction suit, filed in Baltimore, also seeks an order directing Kotmair and Save-a-Patriot to give the Justice Department their customers’ names, mailing and e-mail addresses, and telephone and Social Security numbers.
The government’s complaint alleges that Kotmair, Save-a-Patriot, and National Workers Rights Committee (a division of Save-a-Patriot) falsely advise their customers-whom they charge upwards of $99 a year-that they are not required to pay federal taxes or file federal tax returns. Such arguments repeatedly have been rejected by courts across the country. The government alleges that they offer to prepare and file bankruptcy petitions and other court papers for customers in order to obstruct IRS law-enforcement efforts. In addition, the suit claims that Kotmair and Save-a-Patriot encourage and help members to violate tax laws by offering “insurance-like protection” for customers whose conduct results in tax-collection efforts or criminal convictions.
“People who sell tax scams enrich themselves at the expense of their customers and law-abiding Americans who pay taxes,” said Eileen J. O’Connor, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Tax Division. “The Justice Department and the Internal Revenue Service are working vigorously to stop the promotion of tax fraud.”
This case is part of the Justice Department’s initiative to stop the promotion of tax-fraud schemes. Information about cases involved in this initiative is available at <http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/taxpress2005.htm>. Frivolous tax arguments are near the top of the IRS’s list of the Dirty Dozen tax scams, the full list of which is available at <http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=136337,00.html>. Information about the Tax Division is available at <http://www.usdoj.gov/tax/index.html>.