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Tax preparer in Georgia ordered to pay nearly $550K in restitution, go to jail

New York, Dec 22 (IANS) A 56-year-old Indian-origin tax return preparer in the US state of Georgia has been sentenced to two years in prison after he pled guilty to tax evasion.

Samir Patel of Statesboro was ordered to pay approximately $550,000 in restitution to the United States, a fine of $95,000 and serve three years of supervised release upon completion of his prison term.

“Much of our nation’s operating revenues are dependent on the lawful participation of citizens in the income tax system, and those who evade their responsibilities place a greater burden on everyone else,” US Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia, Jill E Steinberg, said on Tuesday.

“This sentence demonstrates the substantial consequences of attempting to cheat the system.”

Patel, a tax return preparer at a national return preparation business, purchased a franchise of the business in Claxton in 2015, according to court documents and testimony,

As the owner, he hired, trained, and supervised tax preparers, and continued to prepare returns for customers.

Patel, however, willfully filed false income tax returns that omitted more than $1.28 million in income — including almost $1.18 million from a company called S&W Amusements — and evaded proper assessment of his personal taxes for years 2015, 2016, and 2017.

S&W Amusements placed coin operated amusement machines in convenience stores and gas stations.

As part of his sentence, Patel is prohibited from preparing tax returns for others or for entities in which he has no interest during his term of supervised release.

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