Wednesday, January 27, 2010

IRS Agents acting badly

In New York City IRS agent Robert Rosner asked the head of a small business he was auditing to take him out to lunch and then requested a $5,000 bribe to end the examination. Two days later, Rosner repeated the solicitation in a telephone call to the victim--who had a tape recorder running and took the tape to authorities. Rosner pleaded guilty and was sentenced to two years probation.

Out in Las Vegas, Fernando Cruz is set for sentencing next month after pleading guilty to accepting a $500 "gratuity" from a couple he was auditing as an IRS tax compliance officer. The tape recorders again were rolling after the couple went to authorities.

The IRS long has had difficulties trying to figure out if a taxpayer correctly reported the tax treatment of sold-off real estate. In Southern California, IRS Revenue Agent Jim H. Liu reported a $4,200 loss on the sale of a home in Pomona, Calif. In fact--as he later admitted in court--he had a profit of $48,000. Liu received two years probation, paid a $4,000 fine and made $38,000 in restitution.

Spotting a business opportunity, New York City IRS agent Harry Willner set up a company out of his home he used to help others--and himself--take phony business deductions. For his efforts Willner received a one-year prison sentence and a $10,000 fine.