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Press Release

Richard Johnson sentenced to 12 months and one day in prison for filing a false tax return

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Louisiana

SHREVEPORT, La. – United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced that Richard Z. Johnson Jr. was sentenced Wednesday to 12 months and one day in prison for filing a false federal income tax return.

Johnson, 59, of Mansfield, La., was sentenced by U.S. District Judge S. Maurice Hicks Jr. on a one-count bill of information charging him with making or subscribing a false tax return. He was also sentenced to one year of supervised release and ordered to pay $275,184 in total restitution of his back taxes. According to the September 21, 2015 guilty plea, Johnson reported a total income of $126,197 on his 2011 U.S. individual tax return but willfully failed to report additional income in the amount of $78,717.

The prison sentence was based on a tax loss of approximately $107,000 attributable to criminal violations of federal tax laws. The plea agreement covers full restitution of all delinquent back taxes, including interest and penalties. 

“Mr. Johnson filed a false tax return where he willfully failed to report a significant portion of his income,” Ms. Finley stated. “Filing false returns is a serious crime, and my office will continue to identify and prosecute those who violate our tax laws.”

“The filing and timely payment of income tax returns is an obligation that all Americans should take seriously,” said Special Agent in Charge of IRS Criminal Investigation, Jerome R. McDuffie. “Mr. Johnson is an attorney, a long-time prosecutor, and was well aware of these requirements.  One of the responsibilities of citizenship is to abide by our nation’s tax laws.  Our agency will continue to work with the United States Attorney’s Office to aggressively investigate allegations of tax crimes and prosecute those who fail to file returns and pay their fair share.  Today’s sentence is a reminder that no one is above the law.”

The IRS conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys William J. Flanagan and Seth D. Reeg prosecuted the case.

Updated February 18, 2016