RALEIGH, N.C. – Gene Hersholt Williamson II, was sentenced today to 36 months in prison for aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false tax return and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $637,000.00.
According to court documents, Gene Hersholt Williamson, II, 54, operated a tax return preparation business out of Jacksonville, North Carolina between 2012 and 2018. Williamson fraudulently inflated his clients’ claimed refunds by reporting fictitious Schedule C businesses on his clients’ returns. If clients had minimal income, Williamson created a fraudulent Schedule C business for them, reporting additional income in order to maximize the claimed earned income tax credit. If, however, clients had substantial wage income, Williamson created fraudulent businesses with significant expenses to reduce their income, qualifying them to receive earned income tax credit. Williamson received 10% of the refunds for his services. To conceal his involvement in the scheme, Williamson did not list himself as the paid return preparer on any returns he prepared.
In addition to preparing false tax returns for clients, Williamson filed false tax returns for himself for 2012-2017. In all Williamson’s misconduct resulted in a tax loss to the IRS of over $550,000.
Robert J. Higdon, Jr., U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge James C. Dever III. The Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations investigated the case and Assistant U.S. Attorney Susan B. Menzer and Tax Division Trial Attorney William Guappone prosecuted the case.
Related court documents and information can be found on the website of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina or on PACER by searching for Case No. 7:20-CR-00133-D.
The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.