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The U.S. Department of Justice moved yesterday (August 7) to block San Diegan Michael I. Turner from preparing federal tax returns.

Turner, who has been in business locally since at least 2004 according to the Justice Department, is accused of taking bogus deductions on behalf of his clients in order to help them realize larger tax returns, specifically claiming fake charitable contributions and inflated non-reimbursed employee expenses. The Department further claims that, when his clients have been audited, Turner has provided falsified documents to back up their original illegal claims.

While running his business largely through word-of-mouth referrals, Turner has allegedly not signed tax returns or provided a Preparer Tax Identification Number (though he did apply for a number in 2010 and has prepared at least 68 returns while properly identifying himself), and has instructed clients not to identify him as their tax preparer to Internal Revenue Service agents.

The Department is seeking a court order barring Turner from preparing additional returns, or representing clients in IRS audit hearings, as well as from “owning, managing, controlling, working for or volunteering for a tax-return preparation business.”

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