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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Pennsylvania

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, June 3, 2022

Main Line Accountant Convicted at Trial of Tax Evasion

PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Michael Goldner, 51, of Malvern, PA, was convicted today at trial of tax evasion and failing to file tax returns, charges arising from his scheme to use his cash and his employer’s business bank accounts to hide his actual income and therefore avoid paying his legitimate tax obligations.

In June 2021, the defendant was charged by Indictment, and a Superseding Indictment was filed in November 2021 charging the defendant with one count of tax evasion and two counts of failure to file personal income tax returns. Evidence presented at trial showed that for the tax years 2013 through 2017, Goldner reported more than $4 million in income and $1.8 million in tax due, of which he paid less than $100,000. Further, from 2016 to 2020, the defendant evaded the payment of these outstanding taxes while earning a substantial income. Instead of depositing his paychecks into a personal bank account, he cashed the checks and used his employer’s business accounts to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars of personal expenses, including rent, a second home, groceries, private school and dance lessons for his child, country club dues, and restitution from a prior fraud conviction for which he was on federal probation. For the years 2016 and 2017, the defendant filed tax returns that failed to report this additional income from his employer. For tax years 2018 and 2019, the defendant failed to file a return altogether.

“The American tax system provides government services critical to our people,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “Every time someone cheats the tax system, the burden of providing vital services increases on taxpayers who pay their fair share. As a professional accountant, this defendant knew what his obligations were and willfully chose to ignore them, even while he was on federal probation for a previous fraud conviction. The jury’s verdict has sent a clear message that tax cheats will not be tolerated.”

“Mr. Goldner went through great lengths to not pay taxes, including hiding money from the IRS,” said Yury Kruty, IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge. “In all the steps he took to hide his money, he failed to account for the hallmark expertise IRS Special Agents possess when it comes to following the money. Mr. Goldner thought he could fly under the radar, but the verdict returned today shows how futile his efforts were.”

“‘If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again’ really shouldn’t be a fraudster’s mantra,” said Jacqueline Maguire, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division. “But Michael Goldner apparently thought he’d give it a whirl. Hopefully, this second federal conviction will be more impactful than his first. To put it plainly: if you keep defrauding the government and cheating honest taxpayers, the FBI and our partners are going to keep locking you up.”

The case was investigated by Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigations and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David Ignall and Department of Justice Trial Attorney for the Criminal Division’s Tax Section Jack Morgan.

Topic(s): 
Tax
Contact: 
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY’S OFFICE EASTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA 615 Chestnut Street, Suite 1250 Philadelphia, PA 19106 JENNIFER CRANDALL Media Contact 215-861-8300 If you have not done so already, follow @USAO_EDPA and @USAttyWilliams on Twitter to get the most up-to-date information about big cases and community news.
Updated June 3, 2022