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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Former Chief Financial Officer for Miss Eaton, Inc. Sentenced for Tax Evasion

OXFORD, Miss. – Felicia C. Adams, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Mississippi, together with Acting Special Agent in Charge, Jerome R. McDuffie with IRS Criminal Investigation-New Orleans Field Office announce:

William Dewey Harrison of Sun City, Arizona, was sentenced on December 11, 2014 by United States District Court Judge Michael P. Mills, in Oxford, Mississippi, following a guilty plea to one felony count of attempting to evade or defeat income tax in relation to his previous employment as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the company formerly known as Miss Eaton, Inc., a furniture manufacturer in Pontotoc, Mississippi.

Harrison was hired by Miss Eaton, Inc. as the CFO in 2000 and worked for the company until 2008.  An investigation by the government revealed that over the course of his employment as CFO for the company, Harrison executed a scheme to embezzle funds.  Harrison’s illegal scheme resulted in the embezzlement of over $600,000 dollars from the company which he then failed to report as income received, filing false and fraudulent income tax returns for the years 2004-2008.  Additionally, Harrison failed in his fiduciary duty as CFO to properly withhold and pay employment taxes on behalf of Miss Eaton’s employees, instead diverting these funds for his own use.  Acting Special Agent in Charge, Jerome R. McDuffie, stated, “Evading the assessment and payment of your income taxes is against the law.  Mr. Harrison’s decision to break the law has earned him time in federal prison.  The Special Agents of IRS-CI stand ready to pursue tax violators and will seek prosecution of these offenses to the fullest extent of the law.”

Judge Mills sentenced Harrison to fifty-one (51) months imprisonment, followed by three (3) years of supervised release and ordered Harrison to pay $2,312,353.69 in restitution to the Department of the Treasury-IRS.

This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Chad M. Doleac.

Updated February 3, 2015