Las Vegas Man Sentenced To Prison For Tax Fraud
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – A Las Vegas man was sentenced Thursday to 22 months in prison for evading to pay more than $3 million in taxes for his purported asset protection business and fraudulently concealing assets in a separate case, announced U.S. Attorney Dayle Elieson for the District of Nevada and Special Agent in Charge Tara Sullivan of the IRS-Criminal Investigation.
Richard C. Neiswonger, 67, previously pleaded guilty to one count of Conspiracy to Defraud the United States and two-counts of mail fraud. In a separate case, he pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud. In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Judge Jennifer A. Dorsey sentenced Neiswonger to pay $3,212,078 in restitution to the IRS.
From 1999 to mid-2006, Neiswonger, who was imprisoned, and his business partner, formed Asset Protection Group, Inc. (APG) in Nevada in late 1998. Neiswonger, along with his business partner and a certified public accountant, conspired to promote false and misleading business information. Consumers would purchase the APG “asset protection” program for typically $9,800 and become APG “consultants,” who would sell “asset protection” services to clients who wished to conceal assets from potential litigants and creditors, as well as government agencies. The service allowed clients to place funds in bank accounts in the name of nominee entities that could never be traced back to the clients themselves. In turn, APG “consultants” received a portion of the client’s fees. These nominee entity accounts and other fraudulent conveyances, such as so called “friendly liens,” were used to divert and hide income from the IRS. Over 70 APG clients using the APG system had collective IRS liabilities totaling approximately $14 million.
Neiswonger used clients’ funds for personal expenses to include credit card payments and payments on a Mercedes-Benz and Lexus.
In the separate case, Neiswonger, Neiswonger’s wife, and their attorney conspired to fraudulently convey approximately $1 million to the attorney so that it would be concealed from authorities.
The case was investigated by the IRS-Criminal Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Burns prosecuted this case.