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If An Accountant Surmises That Her Client Is Swindling, How Does She Report It?

 
 
Reply Thu 15 Mar, 2018 05:44 pm
Friend asked a question. Someone he knows is an accountant, and has finaly figured out that her client is swindling the IRS for sure, and possibly others. She fears that she might have become complicit unknowingly.

Where should she go? A lawyer, or is there some organization that is set up to receive such complaints?
 
oralloy
 
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Reply Thu 15 Mar, 2018 05:55 pm
To report the fraud itself:

http://www.irs.gov/individuals/how-do-you-report-suspected-tax-fraud-activity

If she did not know about it, and reports it immediately upon suspecting it, I wouldn't imagine that she would be charged with anything.

But I'm not a lawyer. For questions as to her own possible complicity, she really should consult a lawyer.
Blickers
 
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Reply Thu 15 Mar, 2018 09:41 pm
@oralloy,
Thanks. As it turns out, the story has gotten deeper after I posted, but I will pass this website along anyway.

My friend said she was an accountant for this guy who was the head of a multimillion dollar organization, and that she found out the guy was stealing millions. Apparently, the guy told the cops that she must have taken the $2 Million, although the cops apparently said the original amount she took was $2 Million, then just under a Million, now it's down to $20,000. My friend was saying things like if she supposedly took only $20K, where did the other $1.98 Million go, etc. After I started this thread, he also got round to telling me that she was arrested by the local police and faces trial Monday. When I told my friend that's a question for a good lawyer, he said she has a lawyer, a public defender. Which are not noted to be great.

I'll refer the website to him to give to her, and before I left he asked me for the phone number of the closest IRS office, which I gave him.

I strongly suspect my friend has just given me bits and pieces of the situation designed to help his friend and left immense parts of it out. For one thing, what is the head of a multimillion dollar outfit doing having his books done by someone so low paid that she qualifies for a public defender? Another is that police don't generally arrest someone for theft of $2 Million dollars on the say so of the head of the organization, they generally investigate first. The fact that she was arrested after this investigation shows that there might be at least the possibility that she is not completely innocent.

So after these things came out, my only advice to him is to tell her to get a good lawyer if she can possibly afford it, and if she has evidence of the guy cheating the IRS by all means tell them, who knows they might be able to do something with the local authorities in exchange for her testimony on the IRS matter.
jespah
 
  3  
Reply Fri 16 Mar, 2018 07:05 am
@Blickers,
This is all awfully last minute if her trial is set for Monday.

She can try.

However the old cinematic trope of last-minute witnesses, testimony, and proof is just that - a trope. Civil and criminal cases both require the exchange of proof before trial. Way before trial. It's one of the reasons why so many civil cases settle, and so many criminal cases end in a plea agreement.

Bringing forward new proof (fun fact: it's evidence if it's admitted; until then, it's proof) at this late a date might get the trial put off. Maybe.

She's charged with a felony, still. The total has got to go under (I believe) $1500 for it to magically convert to a misdemeanor. A felony = the possibility of a year or more in jail.

Yes, real-live jail.

She needs to get on the stick and get herself another lawyer. And yes, if she's got to go into hock to do so, then do just that.

This is not a time to economize.
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