You are here

Justice News

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

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Vice President of Local Drywall Company Pleads Guilty to Income Tax Fraud

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Robert E. Porter, 53, of Westerville, Ohio pleaded guilty to filing a false income tax return with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Porter faces a maximum of three years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.


Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Troy N. Stemen, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Criminal Investigation, Cincinnati Field Office, James Vanderberg, Special Agent in Charge, the United States Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations, Brad Geary, Special Agent in Charge, United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General, and Marlon Miller, Special Agent in Charge, Homeland Security Investigations announced the guilty plea entered before U.S. District Judge Michael. H. Watson.


According to court documents, between 2009 and 2013 Porter was the Vice President of Porter Drywall and was also the Vice President of Black Star Drywall, Inc. Porter Drywall contracted to provide drywall installation and drywall supplies to residential and commercial contractors in Central Ohio. As well as being Vice President, Porter was a jobsite supervisor and estimator for Porter Drywall’s private and corporate clients.


Porter diverted numerous customer payments to his personal bank account. Acting on behalf of Porter Drywall, Porter provided estimates for certain projects and assigned Porter Drywall’s employees and/or subcontractors to complete the work. On “diverted income” projects, all expenses, including labor and materials, were incurred by Porter Drywall and all revenue/payments generated were deposited into Porter’s personal bank account.


“Income tax fraud is not a victimless crime,” said Troy N. Stemen, Acting Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation, Cincinnati Field Office. “Individuals who corruptly violate the law to further their business interests and intentionally evade paying their fair share of taxes undermine public confidence in our tax system and unfairly disadvantage businesses that play by the rules.”


Porter has also agreed to ensure that Porter Drywall subscribes to proper governmental forms and otherwise complies with all tax and immigration laws with respect to its employees.


U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the investigation of this case by the IRS, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and Homeland Security Investigations, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel A. Brown, who is prosecuting the case.

Updated January 13, 2017