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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Virginia Man Sentenced to Prison for Tax Fraud and Structuring More than $475,000

Used Purported Religious Missions to Conceal Income

WASHINGTON - A Concord, Virginia man was sentenced to prison today for tax and currency structuring charges, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Thomas T. Cullen for the Western District of Virginia.

Barry Edwards, 54, was sentenced to 36 months in prison on one count of filing a fraudulent 2013 tax return and one count of conspiring to structure cash transactions.

According to court documents and information provided to the court, Barry and his wife Joanne Edwards created two purported religious missions in 2006, which they used as nominees to receive income Barry Edwards earned selling nutritional supplements. The couple deposited this income into bank accounts held in nominee names. They then withdrew more than $475,000 in cash from these accounts, in increments less than $10,000, to evade bank-reporting requirements. The couple deposited the withdrawn funds into their own bank accounts to pay personal expenses, including car payments and their children’s tuition. Barry Edwards also used the cash to purchase a five-acre farm in Concord, Virginia. The couple jointly filed fraudulent 2013 through 2015 tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that did not fully report their income.

In addition to the term of imprisonment, U.S. District Court Judge Norman K. Moon ordered Barry Edwards to serve three years of supervised release. Mr. Edwards was also ordered to pay $7,929.00 in restitution to the IRS for unpaid taxes.

The Court previously sentenced Joanne Edwards, on May 9, 2018, to 18 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release as well as restitution for filing a fraudulent 2013 tax return and conspiring to structure cash transactions.

Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman and U.S. Attorney Thomas T. Cullen thanked special agents of IRS Criminal Investigation, who conducted the investigation, and Trial Attorney Sean Beaty of the Tax Division and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Kari Munro, who prosecuted the case.

Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the division’s website.

Updated July 24, 2018