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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Oregon

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, October 24, 2014

Coos County Tax Protestors Convicted of Tax Crimes

EUGENE, Ore. – Amanda Marshall, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon, announced that a federal jury in Eugene, Oregon has returned verdicts convicting Ronald Joling, 71, and Dorothea Joling, 72, both of Coquille, Oregon, of federal criminal tax violations.  Ronald Joling was found guilty of conspiracy to defraud the United States by obstructing the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), tax evasion, and filing false income tax returns.  Dorothea Joling was likewise convicted of conspiracy to defraud the United States by obstructing the IRS.  Chief U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken presided over the trial and will sentence the Jolings on February 11, 2015.

U.S. Attorney Marshall noted, “Most citizens pay their taxes as part of being responsible members of society.  When people like the Jolings refuse to pay their fair share, and then threaten, harass, and file liens against people who are just trying to do their jobs, my office will aggressively prosecute them and work with the IRS to hold them accountable.”

Evidence at trial detailed the Jolings’ illegal efforts over close to twenty years to keep the IRS and the Oregon Department of Revenue from collecting almost $2 million they owed in back taxes, penalties and interest.  The Jolings’ efforts to thwart the IRS included their use of sham trusts, a corporation, sole bank accounts in the names of nominees, a warehouse bank, bogus money orders, bills of exchange, bonds, and filing false tax returns with the IRS.  When those efforts failed, the Jolings resorted to intimidation tactics and threats.  Witnesses testified that in response to attempts to collect taxes owed, the Jolings threatened them with arrest, criminal prosecution and lawsuits.  In one instance, the Jolings took out a newspaper advertisement in the Coquille Valley Sentinel accusing a local government employee of malfeasance just for performing her job.  The Jolings also filed retaliatory bogus liens against federal judges, the federal court clerk’s office, and federal prosecutors who were involved in the criminal case.

Rather than pay their taxes, the Jolings spent about $750,000 on a motel and restaurant in Coquille and tracts of land in Linn County.  They attempted to conceal their interest in these properties from the IRS by placing them in sham trusts.

“Every American who pays his or her taxes is harmed by those who use abusive trusts and other schemes to avoid paying their fair share,” said Special Agent in Charge Teri Alexander, IRS Criminal Investigation. “We owe it to every American taxpayer to use all lawful means to identify and prosecute those who evade their taxes.”

This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation.  It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Scott E. Bradford and Chris Cardani.

Updated February 5, 2015