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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, May 6, 2022

Jury Convicts Southern Illinois University-Carbondale Professor of Concealing Foreign Bank Account from the Internal Revenue Service

Benton, Ill. – Dr. Mingqing Xiao, 60, of Makanda, Illinois, was convicted by a federal jury on 
Wednesday, May 4, 2022, in connection with lying to federal authorities about a foreign bank 
account in China in 2017, 2018, and 2019.

Dr. Xiao, a mathematics professor and researcher at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, was 
convicted  of  three  counts  of  Making  a  False  or  Fraudulent  Statement  to  the  Internal  
Revenue Service (IRS) on his tax returns and one count of Failure to File a report of a Foreign 
Bank Account (FBAR).   Evidence presented at the trial established that Xiao opened a foreign bank 
account at Ping An Bank in China in 2016 and received monthly deposits into the account from 
Shenzhenalo University in Shenzhen, China, from 2016 to 2020. Some of the funds were linked to 
additional sources in China. By 2020, Xiao had accumulated more than $100,000 in the Chinese 
account.
U.S. taxpayers are required to report the existence of any foreign bank account on their federal 
income  tax  returns.  In  addition,  individuals  with  funds  in  foreign  accounts  totaling  
more  than $10,000  at  any  time  during  a  given  year  are  required  to  file  an  FBAR  with  the  
Treasury Department.

“There  are  foreign  entities  that  exploit  American  universities  and  grant  agencies,”  said 
 U.S. Attorney Steven D. Weinhoeft. “To guard against this abuse, the National Science Foundation 
(NSF) requires grant applicants to disclose any conflicting activities, including foreign 
activities, as a condition of receiving federal funding. Further, all U.S. citizens are obligated 
to disclose any foreign bank accounts they may have. The evidence established that Dr. Xiao 
concealed foreign work and hid more than $100,000 of foreign assets in an account in China, and he 
was properly prosecuted and held accountable.”

“Failing to  disclose  a foreign bank  account  and  filing false tax returns demonstrates  a lack 
of truthfulness and an  abdication of the duties of citizenship,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge 
David Nanz.   “Xiao received money from a Chinese employer and knowingly failed to report those 
funds, thereby evading his income tax responsibilities. The FBI is committed to investigate and 
bring to justice anyone who avoids their obligation to live by our nation’s laws.”

“As this verdict shows, when you fail to disclose a foreign bank account and submit false income
tax statements to the IRS, you are committing tax fraud,” said Darrell J. Waldon, Special Agent in Charge  of  the  IRS-CI  Washington  DC  Field  Office.   “Xiao’s  acts  of  fraud  and  dishonesty 
undermine the integrity of our system of taxation.   Our agency will continue to uphold its mission 
to investigate tax and financial crimes in order to uphold confidence in our tax system, holding 
individuals accountable for their crimes.”

The court dismissed two additional counts against Xiao that charged wire fraud.   In addition, Xiao 
was found not guilty of a false statement charge.   Those three charges were all related to alleged 
fraud in connection with a grant Xiao obtained from the National Science Foundation.

The charge of making and subscribing false income tax returns provides for a sentence of up to 
three years in prison, one year of supervised release and a $100,000 fine.   The charge of failing 
to file an FBAR provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, three years of supervised 
release, and a fine of $250,000.   Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based 
upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.   Sentencing is set before the 
Honorable Staci M. Yandle on August 11, 2022.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation-Springfield Field Office and the 
Internal Revenue Service—Criminal Investigations.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Peter Reed and Scott Verseman of the U.S. 
Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Illinois and Trial Attorney Derek Shugert of the
National Security Division of the Department of Justice.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Updated May 6, 2022