Former Texas State Representative Pleads Guilty to Tax Evasion
Concealed Pension Checks and Other Assets from IRS to Avoid Paying Nearly $800,000 Tax Debt
A former member of the Texas House of Representatives pleaded guilty today to evading payment of outstanding taxes he owed to the IRS. The plea was entered before U.S. Magistrate Judge Susan Hightower.
According to court documents and statements made in court, from approximately May 2011 through October 2019, Ronald Ray Wilson, formerly of Austin, willfully attempted to evade payment of income taxes he owed to the IRS. From 1977 through 2004 Wilson was an elected member of the Texas House of Representatives. In 1995, he also created a law firm, Ron Wilson & Associates. After leaving the Texas House of Representatives, Wilson earned a monthly pension from his service and continued to work as a lawyer.
In September 2008 and February 2011, Wilson agreed to two U.S. Tax Court decisions finding that he owed outstanding taxes to the IRS. After stipulating to these judicial decisions, Wilson took steps to conceal his income and assets from the IRS to avoid payment of the overdue taxes. Specifically, Wilson utilized his law firm’s trust account – which was limited to holding client funds – to conceal his personal assets by depositing his monthly salary into this account. Furthermore, to avoid an IRS levy placed on his personal bank account, Wilson ceased direct deposit of his monthly pension from the House of Representatives and instead ensured that he would receive physical checks. He deposited some of these checks into accounts belonging to a trust for which he served as trustee, then converted the deposited funds into cashier’s checks for his own use. In total, Wilson caused a tax loss to the IRS of approximately $794,632.
Wilson is scheduled to be sentenced at a later date and faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison. He also faces a period of supervised release, restitution, and monetary penalties. A federal district court judge will first accept Wilson’s guilty plea and then determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division made the announcement.
IRS-Criminal Investigation is investigating the case.
Assistant Chief David Zisserson and Trial Attorney Ashley Stein of the Tax Division is prosecuting the case.