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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, August 2, 2019

Owners Of Orange County Car Dealership Arrested On Tax And Bank Fraud Charges

Indictment Unsealed Today Alleges that Defendants Concealed Millions of Dollars of Business Income and Lied to Lenders

Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Jonathan D. Larsen, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Office of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division (“IRS-CI”), and William F. Sweeney Jr., the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), announced the arrests today of MEHDI MOSLEM and SAAED MOSLEM, father-and-son operators of the Exclusive Motor Sports car dealership in Central Valley, New York.  The defendants will be presented before United States Magistrate Judge Lisa Margaret Smith. 

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said:  “As alleged, Mehdi and Saaed Moslem defrauded the United States by understating income and inventory of their auto dealership, and they defrauded lenders by overstating their net worth in loan applications.  Whether allegedly understating or overstating, father and son were falsifying – and committing crimes.”           

IRS-CI Special Agent in Charge Jonathan D. Larsen said:  “Today’s arrests show that underreporting business gross receipts to conceal millions of dollars of income is a serious criminal offense.  IRS Criminal Investigation will pursue those individuals who break the law and violate the American tax system.”

FBI Assistant Director William F. Sweeney Jr. said:  “Lying to financial institutions and skirting the regulations put in place by U.S. tax laws is a violation of federal law, crimes both Mehdi and Saaed Moslem are charged with today.  The popular saying about certainties in life omits a third guarantee – when the FBI and IRS catch you engaging in fraudulent behavior and illegal business practices, you will be charged.”           

As alleged in the Indictment, which was unsealed today in White Plains federal court:[1]

From 2009 through 2016, MEHDI MOSLEM and SAAED MOSLEM conspired to defraud the United States by concealing millions of dollars of profits relating to Exclusive Motor Sports from the IRS.  To falsely lower their business income, MEHDI MOSLEM and SAAED MOSLEM caused their accountant to prepare partnership tax returns that significantly understated Exclusive Motor Sports’ gross receipts and inventory.  The fraudulent business income figures passed through to MEHDI MOSLEM’s and SAAED MOSLEM’s personal tax returns filed with the IRS, resulting in a substantial underreporting of the amount of tax due.  SAAED MOSLEM then used his fraudulent income tax returns and made other false statements to conceal his assets from creditors when he filed for bankruptcy in 2015.

From 2011 through 2017, MEHDI MOSLEM and SAAED MOSLEM also conspired to defraud multiple financial institutions by submitting falsely inflated net worth statements and fabricated tax returns in connection with loan applications, including for a $1.2 million mortgage on the Exclusive Motor Sports property in Central Valley, on which they later defaulted. 

*                *                *

MEHDI MOSLEM, 70, of Central Valley, New York, and SAAED MOSLEM, 35, of Central Valley, New York, are each charged with one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison, and one count of bank fraud conspiracy, which carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison.  SAAED MOSLEM is also charged with two counts of making false statements to a lender, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, and one count of concealing assets and making false declarations in a bankruptcy case, which carries a maximum sentence of five years.  The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendants will be determined by the judge.

Mr. Berman praised the outstanding investigative work of the IRS-CI and the FBI.

This case is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division.  Assistant United States Attorney Daniel Loss is in charge of the prosecution.

The charges contained in the Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

 

[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Indictment, and the description of the Indictment set forth herein, constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Tax
Press Release Number: 
19-247
Updated August 2, 2019