Baltimore, Maryland – Francesco Illiano, a/k/a Frank Illiano, age 62, of Mount Airy, Maryland, pleaded guilty yesterday to willfully failing to pay employment taxes withheld from employees of his businesses to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Erek L. Barron; Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division; and Special Agent in Charge Kareem A. Carter of the Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation, Washington, D.C. Field Office.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Illiano owned and operated two restaurants and a property management company which employed over 100 people. Illiano was responsible for collecting, accounting for, and paying the income and Social Security and Medicare taxes withheld from the wages of employees of the three companies he controlled. From at least April 2014 to at least July 2016, Illiano did not pay the taxes withheld from the wages of his employees to the IRS. Illiano had previously been assessed a Trust Fund Recovery Penalty for not paying more than $1.4 million in taxes withheld from employees of five Green Turtle restaurants the defendant owned in 2011 and 2012. In total, from April 2011 to July 2016, Illiano caused a tax loss to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of approximately $1.729 million.
Illiano faces a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison for willfully failing to pay employment taxes to the IRS. U.S. District Judge Ellen L. Hollander has scheduled sentencing for March 6, 2024.
United States Attorney Erek L. Barron and Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg commended the IRS-Criminal Investigation for its work in the investigation. Mr. Barron thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Jefferson M. Gray and Trial Attorney Shawn T. Noud of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, who are prosecuting the federal case.
For more information on the Maryland U.S. Attorney’s Office, its priorities, and resources available to help the community, please visit www.justice.gov/usao-md and https://www.justice.gov/usao-md/community-outreach.
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