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Art dealer pleads guilty in tax evasion case

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When a person in Missouri completes his or her taxes — either personal or for business — he or she may not fully understand the implications of the information that he or she must provide. A simple mistake or accidental oversight may be easy to make. Unfortunately, despite the possibility of a mistake like this occurring with no bad intentions, federal officials may view it as deliberate tax evasion.

In fact, an art dealer in another state has recently pleaded guilty to such charges. Officials claim that the 66-year-old woman claimed that $1.6 million in personal expenses were actually business expenses that qualify for a tax deduction. She is accused of reporting that, in 2011, her business lost $53,000 when, in reality, it is believed that the business made $3.7 million.

Reports accuse the woman of covering up the fraud through her gallery. For example, she allegedly used business checks to pay $800,000 in remodeling costs for her apartment. She reportedly used an additional $120,000 from the gallery to pay for rent and other expenses stemming from a second apartment she lived in during remodeling. As part of the plea agreement, she will pay $3 million, a fine that will cover missed taxes from previous years as well. She also faces up to three years in prison.

Unfortunately, many people in Missouri can also find themselves embroiled in accusations of tax evasion. In most cases, those facing such accusations are unfamiliar with the criminal justice system, putting them at a disadvantage if they are charged. Many feel unable to respond to such accusations without an experienced criminal defense attorney guiding them through the process.

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