As a business owner who collects taxes from consumers, it is your duty to pay back these taxes that you have collected to the IRS or the proper authorities, whether you do so at the beginning of each year or every quarter. When a business owner fails to comply and pockets this money, they are generally faced with some serious repercussions once the IRS or the agency catches wind of the crime that is taking place. The fact is, keeping tax money that isn’t exactly yours to keep is a serious offense, one that is generally punishable with jail time, fines, fees, and having to pay back what was initially owed.
 
One New York business owner is now learning just how serious this crime is after he and his partner pocketed nearly $5 million that was due to the IRS.
 
He’s known by many as the “Taxi King,” but the courts recognize him as Evgeny “Gene” Freidman, a Russian immigrant. Freidman is the owner of Taxiclub Management, Inc., which is a company based out of New York and he was responsible for managing four taxicab medallion management agencies. Forbes highlighted that “Freidman also owned and managed a fleet of over 260 medallion taxicabs and leased hundreds of additional medallions from other owners.” The source says that some of those medallions were owned by Michael Cohen who happens to be President Donald Trump’s personal attorney.
Cohen and Freidman were said to have been business partners for years and worked closely together. In fact, it is even reported that Cohen “managed Freidman’s cabs after city regulators barred the Taxi King from managing his taxi medallions last year. A taxi medallion is rather valuable as it’s purpose is to regulate and even limit the number of taxis that are allowed to operate inside a particular border. In fact, Forbes said that single medallion could be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. The term “medallion” referrers to a metal plate that is physically affixed to cabs, and in areas like NY and Philadelphia, a taxi cannot operate without them.
 
It seemed as though Freidman had a rather profitable business based on the number of medallion taxicabs he had running.
 
Now, each time a person is given a ride in a taxi, they are required to pay a 50-cent state tax, which is called the MTA tax. It is automatically included in the fare and those who are responsible for collecting this tax must report it and deliver it to the proper authorities. Freidman and his business partner, Andreea Dumitru, weren’t doing this. Instead, they would pocket the MTA tax and even underreported the number of taxi rides to the state which is how they collected the $5 million. To cover their tracks, the two would also file “bogus returns” or avoid filing tax returns altogether.
Eventually, the pair was recognized for their criminal behavior and Freidman later pleaded guilty to a single count of criminal tax fraud, agreeing that he failed to remit $5 million in MTA surcharge taxes between 2012 and 2015. As a part of his plea, Freidman was required to pay $1,000,000 in restitution and also agree to cover all MTA tax liabilities owed from January 1, 2012, through December 31, 2015. And as long as Freidman abides by the terms stipulated in his plea, he won’t spend any time behind bars.
 
If you are guilty of tax fraud or have failed to file previous tax returns, it would be in your best interest to contact a Garden City, NY tax lawyer as soon as possible.
When you avoid fulfilling your tax obligations and commit tax fraud, you only make it worse for yourself once your actions come to light. Therefore, if you have committed tax fraud or have failed to pay your taxes, rather than continuing to deceive the IRS, consider allowing a Garden City, NY tax attorney to intervene and help get the situation under control. There are options in how you can repay what you owe to the IRS, or you may qualify for bankruptcy which can result in a payment plan being set up so that you can fulfill the debt that is owed.
If you would like help with locating a tax lawyer in Garden City, NY, today USAttorneys.com is available to help you.

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