Nevada Vacuum Distributor and Salesman Both Convicted by Jury in Conspiracy to Defraud the IRS
(STL.News) A federal jury convicted two Nevada men, Saud Alessa and Jeffrey Bowen, yesterday for conspiring to defraud the IRS. A third co-conspirator, Jackie Hayes, previously pleaded guilty to the same charge on Oct. 15. The jury also convicted Alessa today of tax evasion and filing false tax returns.
According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, from 2010 through approximately March 2014, Alessa, Bowen and Hayes conspired to defraud the IRS relating to more than $500,000 in tax liabilities that Alessa owed for tax years 1998 to 2007. As part of the scheme, Hayes entered into a payment arrangement with Bowen, the owner of a vacuum cleaner distributor, J&L Distributing Inc. (J&L), where commissions earned by Alessa for his work at J&L were falsely recorded in J&L’s books as commission earned by Hayes. Hayes and Bowen then submitted tax forms and filings to the IRS that falsely reported Hayes had earned the income. This scheme allowed Alessa to evade IRS collection efforts and the payment of his outstanding federal tax debt. To further conceal his income and assets, Alessa filed false 2012 and 2013 individual tax returns, and in February 2013, he filed a bankruptcy petition falsely reporting no income.
Bowen and Alessa are scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 22, 2022. Hayes is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 18, 2022. All three face a maximum penalty of five years in prison for the conspiracy charge. Alessa also faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison for the tax evasion charge and three years in prison for each count of filing a false tax return. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Acting Special Agent in Charge C. Darren Lian of IRS-Criminal Investigation made the announcement.
IRS-Criminal Investigation investigated the case. Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Goldberg and Acting Special Agent in Charge Lian also thank the U.S. Trustee’s Office for its cooperation in the investigation.
Trial Attorneys Michael Landman and Eric Taffet of the Justice Department’s Tax Division are prosecuting the case.