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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Illinois

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Suburban Chicago Man Sentenced To 37 Months In Prison For Failing To Pay Taxes On $3.1 Million In Income Over Eight Years

CHICAGO — A southwest suburban man was sentenced to just over three years in federal prison for failing to report more than $3.1 million in gross receipts and gambling income and failing to pay more than $582,000 in federal income taxes.  The defendant, PAUL WEST, was sentenced after pleading guilty in August of this year to two counts of filing a false federal income tax return.

West, 62, of Lockport and formerly of Frankfort, also known as “Thomas Wilson,” and “Tom Wilson,” was in the business of selling materials for recycling, including scrap cardboard.  In 2007 and 2011, West under-reported his income from his recycling services and gambling, reporting that he owed little or no taxes.  For six other years between 2004 and 2011, he failed to file any individual income tax returns, despite gross receipts and gambling income over all eight years totaling $3,190,741.   

West was sentenced to 37 months in prison and ordered to pay $582,934 ― the amount of taxes he owed ― in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service.  U.S. District Judge Andrea R. Wood, who imposed the sentence last Friday in Federal Court, ordered West to begin serving his sentence on Jan. 15, 2015.

“West’s tax crimes wrongfully undermine our tax system and its fundamental premise of voluntary and truthful compliance,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Kaarina Salovaara argued at the sentencing.

The sentence was announced today by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, and James C. Lee, Special Agent-in-Charge of the IRS Criminal Investigation Division in Chicago.

In addition to criminal penalties, defendants convicted of tax offenses remain responsible for any taxes and interest due, as well as civil penalties of up to 75 percent of the tax owed. 

Updated July 23, 2015