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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 19, 2019

Businessman Pleads Guilty to $5 Million Tax Fraud and Illegal Firearm Possession

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – An Ashburn businessman pleaded guilty today to employment tax fraud and illegally possessing a firearm.

According to court documents, Lawrence Robert Gazdick, Jr., 54, operated his audio visual equipment rental business under multiple names, including National Technology Rentals, NTL Technology Leasing Services, AV Rental Solutions, and others from 2013 through 2018. During this time, Gazdick withheld payroll taxes from his employees’ paychecks, but failed to file payroll tax returns and failed to pay over the withheld funds to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). In total, Gazdick failed to pay over the IRS approximately $5.35 million of payroll taxes. Additionally, Gazdick admitted to possessing a firearm recovered from his business office, despite the fact that he was previously convicted of a felony.

As part of the plea agreement, Gazdick agreed to pay over $200,000 in restitution for premiums he failed to pay for health insurance provided to his employees.

Gazdick pleaded guilty to willful failure to collect, account for, and pay over taxes; and unlawfully possessing a firearm. He faces a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment on the tax offense and ten years of imprisonment on the firearm offense when sentenced on October 18. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), which is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, Richard E. Zuckerman, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Tax Division, Kelly R. Jackson, Special Agent in Charge, Washington, D.C. Field Office, IRS-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), Charles Dayoub, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Criminal Division, FBI Washington Field Office, and Ashan M. Benedict, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF) Washington Field Division, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Anthony J. Trenga accepted the plea. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jamar K. Walker and Trial Attorney Kimberly Shartar of the Tax Division are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:19-cr-200.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Health Care Fraud
Tax
Contact: 
Joshua Stueve Director of Public Affairs joshua.stueve@usdoj.gov
Updated July 19, 2019