Justice News

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Louisiana Tax Defier Sentenced to 46 Months in Prison

WASHINGTON – Paul Richard Arceneaux, a resident of Church Point, La., was sentenced today to prison for failing to file his personal tax returns for 2003 and 2004 and corruptly interfering with the due administration of the Internal Revenue laws, the Justice Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced. The Honorable Walter J. Gex III, U.S. District Court Judge for the Southern District of Mississippi, sentenced Arceneaux to 46 months in prison and three years of supervised release. The court also ordered Arceneaux to pay restitution of $176,616.18.

In April 2009, Arceneaux was convicted of all charges following a jury trial in Jackson, Miss. According to the indictment and the evidence presented at trial, Arceneaux, formerly of Long Beach, Miss., filed false tax returns or amended tax returns for tax years 1998 through 2002 on which he falsely claimed he earned no income. Additionally, Arceneaux failed to file tax returns for tax years 2003 to 2006. Arceneaux filed fictitious liens for millions of dollars against the Chancery Clerk for Harrison County, an employee of the Chancery Clerk’s office, and an employee of the IRS. Arceneaux also filed frivolous lawsuits against the Commissioner of the IRS and an IRS employee.

In July 2004, the Honorable Louis Guirola Jr., a U.S. District Court Judge for the Southern District of Mississippi, dismissed Arceneaux’s frivolous lawsuits in which Arceneaux claimed that he was a citizen of the state of Mississippi, not the United States, and therefore the Internal Revenue code did not apply to him. Judge Guirola wrote that Arceneaux’s arguments that he is not subject to this nation’s federal tax laws "have been considered and uniformly rejected by the courts."

John A. DiCicco, Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Tax Division commended the IRS-Criminal Investigation special agents who investigated the case, as well as Tax Division trial attorney Jed Silversmith and Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst, who prosecuted the case.

Press Release Number: 
Updated September 15, 2014