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IRS Criminal Investigators Focus Attention in New Jersey


October 22, 2012
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The Internal Revenue Service has ramped up efforts to identify individuals and corporate entities in violation of federal tax law, and as of late, the tax agency has focused its attention on the Garden State.

The Newark, New Jersey, field office for the IRS Criminal Investigation division has increased its attention on the state’s businesses and high net-worth individuals in recent months in attempts to detect tax fraud and financial-related crimes, according to a new report in Accounting Today.

The division specifically investigates legal source, illegal source and narcotics/terrorist financing cases. However, the agency focuses its primary attention on legal source crimes, or those in which individuals and businesses in certain industries take in legal income but engage in tax evasion-type crimes.

“Year-round efforts of IRS-Criminal Investigation are directed at that portion of Americans who willfully and intentionally violate their legal duty to voluntarily file lawful and accurate tax returns and those individuals who commit other related financial crimes,” Victor Lessoff, special agent in charge of IRS Criminal Investigation’s Newark Field Office, told the news source. “The prosecution of these individuals is a vital element in fostering confidence in our tax system and compliance with the law.”

The law enforcement arm of the IRS has already named several businesses and individuals found guilty of noncompliance with federal tax law, and the group plans to increase its efforts to close the tax gap.

In recent years, the IRS has faced significant budget cuts that have made it more challenging to fully realize its efforts to find and prosecute tax evaders. Despite budget cuts, the agency has increased its manpower and reorganized its resources to curb tax abuses and collect unreported income.