Kentucky

Kentucky businessman admits taking part in $14 million tax dodge

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You have several options for paying your federal income taxes. If you can't go to an IRS office, you can visit IRS.gov and click Pay Your Tax Bill.
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You have several options for paying your federal income taxes. If you can't go to an IRS office, you can visit IRS.gov and click Pay Your Tax Bill.

A man who helped operate businesses in Boyle and Garrard counties has pleaded guilty in a scheme to avoid paying millions in federal taxes.

Warren Griffin II, 50, of Lancaster pleaded guilty to one charge of conspiring to defraud the government.

Griffin was a principal in several businesses that provided industrial staffing. The other controller was Clarence Michel Jr., who pleaded guilty earlier.

The companies withheld income taxes from employees’ pay but didn’t send the money to the Internal Revenue Service, according to the indictment.

The two changed the names of the companies to make it harder to trace the fraud.

Griffin also admitted he recruited and paid people to act as owners of companies and put their names on bank accounts to hide the unpaid taxes, according to a news release from U.S. Attorney Robert M. Duncan Jr.

The businesses failed to pay $14.6 million in federal payroll taxes during the time covered in Griffin’s plea, from 2012 to 2016, according to the release.

Griffin received $2.1 million of that, and also underpaid his own federal income taxes by more than $700,000, according to his plea agreement.

His total restitution to the IRS would be $2.8 million.

Michel pleaded guilty to additional charges of taking part in filing false tax returns.

U.S. District Judge Karen K. Caldwell sentenced Michel to five years and 11 months in prison and ordered him to pay $19.2 million in restitution.

Griffin faces up to five years in prison. He is to be sentenced in September.

You can get an extension to file your tax return but make your tax payment by the April due date. Here are instructions on how to get more time to file.

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