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Press Release

Louisiana Physician Sentenced for Tax Evasion

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs
Attempted to Thwart IRS Efforts to Collect $1.6 Million in Outstanding Income Taxes

A Louisiana physician was sentenced today to 52 months in prison for tax evasion.

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Dr. Melissa Rose Barrett, of Baton Rouge, owned and operated two urgent care clinics — Central STAT Care and STAT Care Clinic — and owed the IRS approximately $1.6 million in income taxes, excluding interest and penalties. The IRS notified Dr. Barrett that she owed taxes by letter correspondence, telephone calls, bank account and property seizures as well as interviews with IRS agents. 

Dr. Barrett sought to thwart the IRS’ collection efforts by submitting to the IRS a false IRS Form 433-A, Collection Information Statement that underreported her income and inaccurately detailed her assets, by not making cash deposits into banks and instead accumulating those funds in a safe, and by using nominees to purchase millions of dollars in real estate and personal property, including a personal residence, a boat, an airplane and several parcels of farmland.

In addition to the term of imprisonment, U.S. District Judge Brian A. Jackson ordered Dr. Barrett to serve one year of supervised release and to pay a $200,000 fine.

Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Gathe Jr. for the Middle District of Louisiana made the announcement.

IRS Criminal Investigation investigated the case.

Trial Attorney Wilson Stamm of the Tax Division and Deputy Criminal Chief Edward Warner and Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth White for the Middle District of Louisiana prosecuted the case.

Updated February 29, 2024

Press Release Number: 24-230