UNDATED – The Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation Division reminds all Indiana residents that this year’s deadline for filing federal income tax returns is Monday, May 17.
Due to COVID-19, the original filing deadline and tax payment due date was postponed from April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021. This relief does not apply to estimated tax payments that were due on April 15, 2021.
In general, estimated tax payments are made quarterly to the IRS by people whose income isn’t subject to income tax withholding, including self-employment income, interest, dividends, alimony, or rental income.
For people facing hardships, including those affected by COVID-19, who cannot pay in full, the IRS has several options available on IRS.gov/payments.
IRS Criminal Investigation also encourages all Indiana residents to be cautious of scam artists who are looking for ways to steal money and personal information. Stay alert! The IRS will not contact you by phone, email, or social media to ask for personal information.
“As the tax filing deadline quickly approaches, I am urging citizens to file timely and accurate tax returns. Taxpayers are encouraged to visit the IRS.gov website for tips on filing a tax return accurately and searching for a reputable return preparer,” says Tamera Cantu, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the IRS Criminal Investigation Division, who oversees the state of Indiana. “For those that choose to skirt the tax laws, know that IRS Criminal Investigation, together with the Department of Justice, will investigate and prosecute those who willfully violate our tax system.”
As the tax filing season winds down in the next few weeks, IRS Criminal Investigation encourages taxpayers to think before filing a false or fraudulent tax return and to be wary of any schemes that falsify income or deductions. The following criminal convictions and sentencings have occurred in the Southern District of Indiana over the last seven months.
In February 2021, Mohammad Ruwala was sentenced to 18 months in prison and 36 months of probation on charges of filing a false tax return and laundering money through an E-Bay fraud scheme. Ruwala was also ordered to pay restitution of $225,444 to E-Bay. His brother, Bilal Ruwala was sentenced to 15 months in prison and 36 months of probation after pleading guilty to money laundering and wire fraud for the involvement in the scheme.
In February 2021, Todd Price was sentenced to 14 months in prison and 36 months of probation after pleading guilty to charges of employment tax evasion. He was also ordered to pay restitution to the IRS for $220,000 for both the employer and employee share of the employment taxes due and owing to the IRS that went uncollected. Price had his wife, Jennifer Price, withdraw cash from the business bank account in amounts just under $10,000 to evade detection and tax collection and then paid employees in cash to further avoid paying employment tax on behalf of the employee. Jennifer Prince was sentenced to 6 months in prison and 36 months of probation for assisting in the scheme.
In March 2021, Azambir Khaira was sentenced to 1 year of location monitoring and 60 months of probation after pleading guilty to charges of attempted tax evasion. Khaira was also ordered to pay restitution of $194,148 to the IRS. Khaira owns several gas stations in the Terre Haute, Indiana area and failed to pay employment taxes for his business and from 2016-2018, by either not paying or failing to file Forms 941 and not paying employment taxes.