Criminal Justice News

Friday, June 26, 2015

Massachusetts Dentist Sentenced to Prison for Tax Evasion

A Douglas, Massachusetts, dentist was sentenced today to serve 16 months in prison for tax evasion in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General Caroline D. Ciraolo of the Justice Department’s Tax Division.  

George Fenzell was indicted in February 2014 by a federal grand jury sitting in Boston on multiple counts of tax evasion and one count of corruptly endeavoring to obstruct the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  In November 2014, he pleaded guilty to one count of tax evasion.

U.S. District Court Judge Timothy S. Hillman also sentenced Fenzell to one year of supervised release and ordered him to pay $157,407 in restitution to the IRS.  In sentencing Fenzell, Judge Hillman departed downward from the recommended U.S. Sentencing Guidelines range due, in part, to Fenzell’s cooperation with the government on other matters.

According to court documents, from 1999 through 2012, Fenzell engaged in conduct intended to obstruct the IRS.  For the years 1999 through 2007, he failed to file timely federal income tax returns and concealed income that he earned from his dental practice from the IRS.  Fenzell operated a dental office located in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts.  He concealed his dental business receipts by diverting the funds through nominee entities, including River Valley Dental.  He used multiple nominee bank accounts to conceal his ownership of his income and assets.  Fenzell also titled and registered a Lincoln Navigator and Ducati motorcycle with another nominee entity, Smiling Trust, and made extensive use of cash in order to conceal his fraud from the IRS.

In response to a Massachusetts Department of Revenue investigation and collection action in 2007, Fenzell filed his delinquent federal tax returns for 2000 through 2005.  In filing those returns, Fenzell admitted that he owed federal income taxes totaling $129,841.  Fenzell had not made any tax payments to the IRS for those years.  Rather than pay the federal income taxes and additional interest and penalties that were due and owing, between 2007 and 2012, Fenzell evaded IRS collection efforts by diverting his business receipts to nominee entities and using nominee bank accounts in Florida and Rhode Island to hide his income and assets.  During the same period, he falsified his 2006 and 2007 tax returns that he filed late in 2009, and also failed to file his tax returns for 2008 through 2011.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Ciraolo commended the special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, who investigated the case, and Assistant Chief John N. Kane Jr. and Trial Attorney Thomas Koelbl of the Tax Division, who are prosecuting the case.  Ciraolo also thanked the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the District of Massachusetts for their substantial assistance.

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