Doctor Sentenced For Tax Offense
NEW BERN – United States Attorney Thomas G. Walker announced that today in federal court, United States District Judge Louise W. Flanagan sentenced susan marie lee , age 58, of Raleigh, North Carolina, to 36 months imprisonment and ordered her to pay $496,854.64 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service. LEE was immediately taken into custody after the sentencing hearing. LEE was named in a Criminal Information filed on March 4, 2013 charging her with Corrupt Interference with the Internal Revenue laws. On May 14, 2013, LEE pled guilty to that charge.
According to the investigation, LEE, a graduate of the University of North Carolina Dental School, has an extensive history of non-compliance with the revenue laws. From 1996 through and including 2009, Dr. LEE endeavored to obstruct and impede the Internal Revenue Service by failing to file income tax returns or pay taxes she claimed to owe, filing false income tax returns, forming sham entities to disguise personal expenses as payments related to her dental practice, transferring ownership of her real property to nominees, and fraudulently seeking to discharge her IRS debt by filing for bankruptcy. Despite having numerous opportunities to settle her obligations with the IRS administratively, Dr. LEE maintained a defiant position, refusing to comply with the tax laws. She affirmatively sought to divert her income into sham corporations and hide her assets from seizure. Finally, in 2009, she filed for bankruptcy in an effort to discharge nearly $1 million in tax debt due and owing to the IRS. The Civil Division of the US Attorney’s Office represented the IRS in US Bankruptcy Court and successfully defeated her attempts to discharge this debt.
Investigation of this case was conducted by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations. Assistant United States Attorney Katherine Burnette represented the IRS in the bankruptcy action and Assistant United States Attorney Susan B. Menzer prosecuted the case for the government.