Tax Return Preparer Indicted On Additional Charges Related To Tax Fraud And Refund Theft Schemes Committed While On Pretrial Release
NEWARK, N.J. - A federal grand jury in Newark has returned a 29-count second superseding indictment adding charges alleging that a former Bergen County, New Jersey, tax return preparer filed false federal income tax returns, stole client refunds, and committed identity theft in connection with refunds stolen from a deceased taxpayer, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced today.
Wayne Dunich-Kolb, 53, of Montvale, New Jersey, was originally charged by indictment in March 2014 with five counts of aiding and assisting in the filing of false federal income tax returns and four counts of subscribing to false tax returns. In December 2016, Dunich-Kolb was charged by superseding indictment. Today’s second superseding indictment adds five counts of aiding and assisting in the filing of false tax returns, 12 counts of mail fraud, and two counts of aggravated identity theft, all of which were allegedly committed while the defendant was on pretrial release.
Dunich-Kolb was arrested this morning. The initial appearance on the new charges is scheduled for Monday, April 2, 2018, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Steven C. Mannion.
According to the second superseding indictment:
Dunich-Kolb prepared and filed, through the U.S. mail, fraudulent returns through various tax preparation entities, including Dunich-Kolb LLC, Jadran Services Corp., Adriatica Payroll Corp., Adriatica Tax Planning LLC, and Adriatic Tax Planning LLC (collectively, the “tax preparation entities”), which he ran from his former residence in Saddle River and then from his current residence in Montvale. Dunich-Kolb also maintained a U.S. Post Office box in Las Vegas, Nevada, that he used in connection with his tax preparation business.
Dunich-Kolb caused many of his clients to form fictitious partnerships or corporations that existed in name only and had no business purpose other than to falsely reduce the clients’ tax liability. He prepared false and fraudulent business returns for clients’ fictitious businesses by fabricating and inflating business expenses, such as advertising, travel and other miscellaneous expenses, in order to generate fraudulent business and partnership losses, which he then used to substantially reduce taxpayers’ taxable income on their individual federal income tax returns.
Dunich-Kolb falsified clients’ 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016 individual federal income tax returns (original and amended), partnership returns, and corporation returns by fabricating and inflating: (1) business and partnership Schedule K-1 losses; (2) deductions for unreimbursed employee business expenses, including home office, vehicle mileage and fuel expenses; and (3) expenses and cost basis of rental properties, including vehicle mileage and travel expenses for rentals located within or a short distance from the primary residence.
Dunich-Kolb also falsified his own personal federal income tax returns by substantially underreporting income from his tax preparation and accounting business for tax years 2006, 2007, and 2008. For these tax years, Dunich-Kolb received gross income totaling approximately $500,000 to $657,000 per year. Dunich-Kolb falsely claimed income of only $400 for 2006, $526 for 2007, and $489 for 2008.
Dunich-Kolb also stole certain clients’ federal tax refunds, including the refunds of a deceased client, by causing the IRS to mail the refund checks to Dunich-Kolb’s Las Vegas Post Office box, from where they were mail-forwarded to Dunich-Kolb’s residence in Montvale. Dunich-Kolb, without authorization, used the Social Security numbers of the deceased client and another client on IRS forms claiming that the latter client was entitled to the deceased client’s refunds for tax years 2013 and 2014 and causing the IRS to mail the deceased client’s refunds to his Las Vegas Post Office box. Once in receipt of the clients’ tax refund checks that had been mail-forwarded to his residence, Dunich-Kolb deposited the checks into accounts that he controlled and converted the funds to his own personal use.
Each of the aiding and assisting in the filing of false federal income tax returns and subscribing to false tax returns counts carries a maximum potential penalty of three years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Each of the mail fraud counts carries a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The aggravated identity theft counts each carry a maximum potential penalty of two years in prison that each must run consecutive to the sentence imposed on the underlying mail fraud counts. For committing a felony offense while on pretrial release, the maximum potential penalty is 10 years in prison that must run consecutive to the sentence for the underlying felony offense.
U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jonathan D. Larsen, postal inspectors of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, under the direction of Acting Inspector in Charge Ruth M. Mendonca, and the Montvale Police Department, under the direction of Chief Jeremy Abrams, with the investigation leading to today’s charges.
The charges and allegations in the second superseding indictment are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Shirley U. Emehelu, Chief of the Asset Recover Money Laundering Unit.
Defense counsel: Jeffrey G. Garrigan Esq., Summit, New Jersey