Maryland Chiropractor Indicted for Filing False Tax Returns and Obstructing the IRS
Baltimore, Maryland – A federal grand jury has indicted Dr. Warren Gregory Belcher, age 58, of Salisbury, Maryland, with one count of corruptly endeavoring to impede the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and six counts of filing false tax returns. The indictment was returned on March 20, 2017, and unsealed late on March 21, 2017.
The indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division; and Acting Special Agent in Charge Thomas J. Holloman of the Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation, Washington, D.C. Field Office.
According to the indictment, Dr. Belcher, operated a chiropractic business for nearly 20 years. During that time, he received income for chiropractic services from insurance companies, patients and other third parties, including another chiropractor in Baltimore. The indictment alleges that for the years 2009 through 2015, Belcher filed false individual income tax returns on which he failed to report that he operated a chiropractic business and falsely claimed that he had earned $0 in business income.
The indictment further alleges that between 2008 and 2015, Belcher submitted approximately 79 letters to insurance companies and other third parties in which he threatened that the companies could be subject to civil and criminal penalties for reporting his income to the IRS on a Form 1099-MISC. A Form 1099-MISC is a tax form that is used to report certain types of income to the IRS, including payments for services performed by someone who is not an employee and medical and health care payments. Belcher also made threatening statements to an accountant to prevent the accountant from reporting his income to the government. In addition, Belcher is alleged to have submitted approximately 68 fraudulent Forms 1099-MISC to the IRS on which he falsely claimed that the companies who reported his income to the IRS on Forms 1099-MISC for those years had paid him $0 in income. Finally, Belcher allegedly responded to notices from the IRS regarding additional taxes he owed for the years 2009 and 2011 and a penalty that the IRS assessed against him for filing a frivolous income tax return by sending letters to the IRS in which he falsely claimed that the IRS was violating the law by assessing and collecting his taxes.
An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.
If convicted, Belcher faces a statutory maximum sentence of three years in prison on each count of the indictment. Belcher is scheduled to have an initial appearance today in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.
U.S. Attorney Rosenstein and Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Goldberg commended special agents of IRS–Criminal Investigation, for their work in the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean R. Delaney and Trial Attorney Melissa S. Siskind of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, who are prosecuting the case.