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2 to be sentenced this week on tax fraud charges

POSTED: April 13, 2009 11:06 p.m.

Two defendants will be sentenced this week and face significant time in federal prison for tax fraud.

Jerry Lahr, 65, of Hurst, Texas, will be sentenced this week in federal court. Lahr, a tax protester who promoted and sold fraudulent tax evasion packages involving the use of so-called “pure trust” schemes, will be sentenced for conspiracy to commit tax evasion.

Lahr and his co-defendant, Jacqueline Demer, 50, of Gainesville, concealed his income and assets, using bank accounts in the names of nominee entities and titling Lahr’s real and personal property in the name of trusts and shell entities. Lahr faces a federal guideline sentence ranging from approximately four years to almost six years in prison.

Demer also being sentenced this week in federal court after being convicted on charges of conspiracy to impede the IRS and submitting fictitious bonds to the IRS in purported satisfaction of the tax obligations of Lahr. She faces a federal guideline sentence of five years to almost seven years in prison. Assistant U.S. Attorney Teresa Hoyt is prosecuting both cases.

“The April 15 deadline should not be a temptation to cheat on taxes, for either taxpayers or their tax preparers,” said U.S. Attorney David E. Nahmias. “Millions of Americans comply honestly and conscientiously with the laws regarding the preparation and filing of their income tax returns. The ones who cheat shift the burden to all those who pay their share. The IRS and other federal investigative agencies are on the lookout for tax-related fraud. Taxpayers also need to understand that they, not their tax preparers, are ultimately responsible for the information that goes on their tax returns.”

In a separate tax evasion case, a Cumming man faces sentencing later this summer.

Daniel Edward Turner, 44, was convicted on March 5 on charges of obstructing the IRS and presenting fake financial instruments to pay his back taxes. From 1998 to 2007, Turner obstructed the IRS by not filing tax returns, not paying taxes, hiding income, sending false financial instruments to the IRS and the Treasury, and claiming that IRS employees committed misconduct. Turner submitted more than $491,000 in bogus financial instruments, called “Bills of Exchange,” some of which appeared similar to regular checks. Turner will be sentenced on June 12, 2009. Assistant U.S. Attorney David Leta is prosecuting the case.



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