East Hartford Man Guilty of Making False Statement on Federal Tax Form
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that a federal jury in Hartford has found RAYMOND McLAUGHLIN, also known as “Shakir Ra Ade Bey” and “Shakir Ade Bey,” 45, of East Hartford, guilty of one count of making a false statement on a federal tax form. The trial before U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea began on July 19 and the jury returned its verdict this afternoon.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in March 2009, McLAUGHLIN and his wife refinanced the mortgage for their East Hartford residence, taking out a $233,371 refinancing loan. McLAUGHLIN and his wife failed to make a single mortgage payment for approximately six years thereafter while they resided in the home. In April 2011, the mortgage holder filed a foreclosure lawsuit in state court and, in December 2012, Judge Robert F. Vacchelli granted an Order of Foreclosure against McLAUGHLIN. Between then and April 23, 2014, Judge Vacchelli denied approximately 44 motions filed by McLAUGHLIN to vacate, reopen or otherwise set aside the foreclosure judgment.
On April 24, 2014, McLAUGHLIN mailed packages containing documents related to his foreclosure proceedings to both the U.S. Treasury Department in Washington, D.C., and the Internal Revenue Service in Austin, Texas. The packages included IRS Forms 1099-OID and 1099-A for the 2014 tax year, falsely claiming that McLAUGHLIN had paid $332,204.25 in taxable income to Judge Vacchelli and the Connecticut state courts. The packages also contained an IRS Form 1096 on which McLAUGHLIN stated and declared under the penalties of perjury that he had examined the submissions and that they were true, correct and complete, when, in fact, he knew that he had not made a payment of any kind to either Judge Vacchelli or the courts. Testimony at trial established that had the IRS treated those documents as true, Judge Vacchelli would have been assessed an additional $110,000 in taxes; and that Judge Vacchelli’s pending reappointment to the Superior Court bench could have been placed in jeopardy.
When he is sentenced, McLAUGHLIN faces a maximum term of imprisonment of five years. A sentencing date is not scheduled.
McLAUGHLIN was arrested on a federal criminal complaint on June 2, 2017. He was released on a $50,000 bond until he failed to appear for the beginning of his trial on July 19. He surrendered today. Judge Shea ordered McLAUGHLIN to be detained pending sentencing.
This matter is being investigated by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration and the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Henry Kopel.