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Justice News

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

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Twenty-month Sentence For Westerville Jewelry Store Owner For Tax Evasion

CONTACT: Fred Alverson
Public Affairs Officer

COLUMBUS, OHIO – Elie J. Hannoush, 41, of Westerville, Ohio was sentenced in U.S. District Court today to 12 months and one day in prison followed by eight months of home confinement and ordered to pay $91,140.46 in restitution to the IRS for failing to report income he received from the jewelry stores he owns, Farah Jewelers, from 2005 through 2008.

Carter M. Stewart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Kathy A. Enstrom, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Criminal Investigation, Cincinnati Field Office announced the sentence handed down today by Senior U.S. District Judge George C. Smith.

Hannoush pleaded guilty in November 2012 to one count of tax evasion and one count of failure to report cash payments greater than $10,000 received in a business.

According to court documents, Hannoush often accepted large cash payments from his customers, but failed to report the cash he received as income. Hannoush also admitted he kept a separate accounting system for the cash receivables. Hannoush also admitted he would structure cash receipts by breaking receipts greater than $10,000 into small receipts in order to evade federal cash reporting requirements.

Hannoush admitted that he did not report almost $300,000 in cash from the business. When he filed his federal income tax return for 2006, he reported an income of $27,054 and claimed he was due a $30 refund. His real taxable income for 2006 was $194,817.10 and he owed taxes of $35,188.79 for that year.

U.S. Attorney Stewart commended the investigation by IRS Special Agents and Financial Crimes Chief Brenda Shoemaker, who prosecuted the case.

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Updated July 23, 2015