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Press Release

Tuscola Businessman Sentenced for Income Tax Evasion to More Than Two Years in Prison and to Pay $1.1 Million to IRS

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of Illinois

Springfield, Ill. – A Tuscola, Ill., businessman, Lorenzo Shane Stewart, owner of Ten Acres Excavating, has been ordered to serve 30 months (2 ½ years) in prison for failure to pay income tax. Upon release from prison, Stewart was ordered to serve the first six months of his three-year term of supervised release under home confinement. Stewart was also ordered to pay $1,122,074 in restitution to the IRS. 

Stewart, 49, appeared today in federal court in Springfield before U.S. District Judge Sue E. Myerscough. Stewart was ordered to report on May 8, 2016, to the federal Bureau of Prisons to begin serving his prison sentence.   

Stewart pled guilty on Aug. 21, 2015, to two counts of income tax evasion. During court proceedings and according to court documents, Stewart admitted that he failed to pay more than $1.12 million in income tax for the 2008 and 2009 tax years. In 2006, Stewart began conducting his excavation and construction business under the name Ten Acre Excavating. Stewart put the business under the name of one of his employees. Although Stewart operated the business and received the income generated from the business, Stewart did not claim income generated by Ten Acre Excavating on his own tax returns. 

In approximately July 2008, Stewart was awarded contracts to perform excavating and construction work on several natural gas pipeline substations that were being built in the Tuscola area.  Stewart and his employees performed work on these substations and received checks related to this pipeline work totaling approximately $1.7 million in 2008 and $5.9 million in 2009. Stewart claimed his adjusted gross income for 2008 was approximately $74,199, when in fact, his adjusted gross income for 2008 was approximately $279,803. For 2009, Stewart claimed his adjusted gross income was approximately $257,361, when in fact, his adjusted gross income was approximately $3,044,980.              

Supervisory Assistant U.S. Attorney Eugene L. Miller prosecuted the case. The charges were investigated by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division.

Updated March 8, 2016