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Press Release

Ashland Man Pleads Guilty to Employment Tax Fraud

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Virginia

RICHMOND, Va. – Michael Manning, 52, of Ashland, who operated two masonry contractor construction companies, pleaded guilty today to charges of failing to collect, account for and pay over employment taxes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

According to court documents, Manning was the president of Manning Construction and Manning-Carhen Construction.  Manning controlled the businesses’ finances and was responsible for filing the Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Returns, Forms 941 and paying over to the IRS the federal income, social security and Medicare taxes withheld from the wages of the businesses’ employees.  For the third and fourth quarters of 2014, Manning willfully failed to comply with these legal obligations by failing to pay over more than $800,000 in withheld taxes to the IRS.  Additionally, as part of his plea, Manning admitted that Manning Construction regularly and deliberately created false financial statements for submission to financial institutions in order to comply with that business’s existing loan covenants, to encourage banks to lend new funds to the company, or to enable the renewal of existing loans. 

Manning faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison when sentenced on May 31, 2016. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and Caroline D. Ciraolo, Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, made the announcement after the plea was accepted by U.S. District Judge M. Hannah Lauck. 

The case was investigated by IRS-Criminal Investigation, and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Thomas Garnett and Jasmine Yoon, along with Trial Attorney Melanie Smith of the Tax Division.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.  Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 3:16-cr-17.

Updated February 23, 2016