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Department of Justice
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Monday, August 8, 2016

South Texas Couple Pleads Guilty to Tax Charges

Chiropractor Interfered with IRS Collection Efforts and Retired Firefighter Willfully Failed to File Return

Anna Allen and Martin Armendariz of El Paso, Texas, pleaded guilty today in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas to tax crimes, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Caroline D. Ciraolo, head of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Richard L. Durbin Jr., of the Western District of Texas.

Allen, a practicing chiropractor, and her husband, Armendariz, a retired El Paso firefighter, have not filed federal income tax returns since 2004.  Allen pleaded guilty to evading her 2009 individual income taxes.  Armendariz pleaded guilty to willfully failing to file a 2009 tax return.

According to the statement of facts accompanying the plea agreements, after the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) levied upon Allen’s bank accounts and accounts payable in order to collect back taxes, Allen sent threatening correspondence to her bank regarding the bank’s responses to the IRS’s levy requests and altered her banking habits to prevent any seizures.  Allen also instructed a third party to submit insurance billings on behalf of Allen’s chiropractic business using an Employment Identification Number assigned to another business in order to thwart the IRS’s collection efforts.  Armendariz failed to file a tax return for tax year 2009 for himself and his wife, thereby failing to report more than $211,000 in gross income.

U.S. District Judge Kathleen Cardone of the Western District of Texas set sentencing for both defendants on Oct. 13.  Allen faces a statutory maximum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.  Armendariz faces a statutory maximum sentence of one year in prison and a maximum fine of $100,000.

Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Ciraolo and U.S. Attorney Durbin commended special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, who investigated the case and Trial Attorney Sean Beaty of the Tax Division and Assistant U.S. Attorney Donna Miller of the Western District of Texas, who prosecuted the case. 

Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the Tax division’s website.

Press Release Number: 
Updated August 8, 2016