PITTSBURGH, PA (STL.News) – A resident of Uniontown, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of mail fraud, tax evasion, and willful failure to file income tax returns, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.
Eugene Traficante, 44, pleaded guilty yesterday to four counts before United States District Judge Cathy Bissoon.
In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that in 2006, Traficante was hired to perform billing and bookkeeping work for a business located in Steubenville, Ohio. As part of his duties, Traficante had access to a post office box where the business received payments from customers through the United States mail. In May 2006, Traficante opened a bank account at National City Bank and began depositing into the account checks that he removed from the company’s post office box without the knowledge or consent of the owner of the victim business. Traficante withdrew fraudulently obtained monies from the National City Bank account for his own personal benefit. Traficante stole and/or diverted approximately 168 checks totaling $345,552.59. Additionally, from around January 2011 through April 15, 2012, Traficante willfully attempted to evade income tax due and owing by him to the United States for the 2011 calendar year. Traficante also willfully failed to file income tax returns following the close of the 2012 and 2013 calendar years despite being required by law to do so.
Judge Bissoon scheduled sentencing for July 9, 2019. The law provides for a maximum total sentence of up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for the mail fraud offense, up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for tax evasion, and up to one year in prison and up to a $100,000 fine for each count of conviction of failure to file tax returns. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
The Internal Revenue Service and the United States Postal Inspection Service conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case