The Justice Department filed a lawsuit on Friday against Roger Stone and his wife, Nydia, arguing the longtime associate of former President Donald Trump owes roughly $2 million in unpaid federal taxes and asserting they sought to “shield” their income from being collected as they allegedly funded a “lavish” lifestyle.
Christopher Coulson of the Justice Department’s Tax Division filed a lengthy complaint against the Stones in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida on Friday, saying the DOJ “brings this civil action to reduce to judgment and collect unpaid federal income tax liabilities” owed by the husband and wife for 2007 through 2011, as well as 2018. The lawsuit also argued that Drake Ventures is an “alter ego” for the Stones and thus liable for the tax liabilities, too, and that DOJ believed the transfer of the Stones’ condominium in Fort Lauderdale to the Bertran Family Revocable Trust should be “set aside as fraudulent.”
Stone did not immediately respond to the Washington Examiner’s request for comment.
The Justice Department argued Friday that, as of April 2, the Stones together owed $1.59 million “in unpaid income taxes, penalties, and interest for tax years 2007 through 2011, plus further interest and statutory additions that continue to accrue” and that Stone himself owes just over $407,000 “in income tax, penalties, and interest for tax year 2018, plus further interest and statutory additions that continue to accrue.”
The DOJ further said the Stones “caused numerous checks naming Roger Stone as payee to be deposited into Drake Ventures’ accounts” and “transferred funds from their personal bank accounts to Drake Ventures’ accounts” with checks and wire transfers in 2018 and 2019 exceeding $1 million, and the DOJ said that by doing this, “the Stones evaded and frustrated the IRS’s collection efforts.” The Stones also “used Drake Ventures’ bank accounts to pay a substantial amount of their personal expenses, including groceries, dentist bills, spas, salons, clothing and restaurant expenses” and “used Drake Ventures’ bank accounts to pay some of their personal tax liabilities,” according to the complaint, and “paid over $500,000 of their personal tax liabilities from Drake Ventures’ accounts during the years 2018 and 2019.” The Stones also allegedly used Drake Ventures to pay associates and relatives and transferred $140,000 to Attorney’s Preferred Title as a down payment to purchase their home.
“Although they used funds held in Drake Ventures accounts to pay some of their taxes, the Stones’ use of Drake Ventures to hold their funds allowed them to shield their personal income from enforced collection and fund a lavish lifestyle despite owing nearly $2 million in unpaid taxes, interest and penalties,” the Justice Department claimed. “These facts demonstrate that the Stones used Drake Ventures for an improper purpose and harm the United States. They used Drake Ventures to receive payments that are payable to Roger Stone personally, pay their personal expenses, shield their assets, and avoid reporting taxable income to the IRS.”
The Justice Department told the court on Friday that it was seeking a judgment concluding that the federal tax liens against the Stones are “valid and enforceable against all property and rights to property belonging to the Stones, Drake Ventures, and the Bertran Trust, including the Stone Residence.”
Trump granted Stone clemency in July and commuted his sentence stemming from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, and Stone received a pardon from Trump the day before Christmas Eve. Stone had been convicted in 2019 of lying to congressional investigators about his alleged attempted outreach to WikiLeaks, obstructing a congressional investigation, and attempting to intimidate a possible congressional witness.
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