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IRS CI Increases Enforcement Actions Focused On PPP & EIDL Fraud, Money Laundering & Cybercrimes
The criminal investigation branch of the IRS (IRS-CI) recently released detailed statistics from the 2020-2021 fiscal year, which began October 1, 2020 and ended September 30, 2021. The results indicate a high percentage of convictions for tax fraud and financial crimes, making it more important than ever for taxpayers to have adequate legal representation.
IRS Documentation Of Criminal Convictions
The IRS-CI documented that they had investigated more than 2500 criminal cases associated with financial crimes valued at over $10 billion. They also stated that they had a conviction rate that nears 90%. Their report also describes additional crime investigation statistics along with information about partnerships and criminal enforcement actions.
Agents who work for the IRS-CI are the only federal law enforcement officers who have the authority to investigate criminal violations regarding the U.S. tax code. While the vast majority of man hours in the 2021 fiscal year were spent investigating common tax crimes such as tax evasion and tax fraud, the IRS-CI also made significant contributions to equally devastating tax crimes including money laundering, terrorism, COVID-19 related fraud, narcotics trafficking, and more.
Increased Global Investigation Of Cyber Crime & Money Laundering
Throughout the 2021 fiscal year, IRS-CI expanded its network of field offices both in the United States and internationally. The IRS holds an alliance with the Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement, which works to strengthen partnerships between financial institutions and other industries in order to identify, deter, and prosecute financially related criminal activity. The IRS-CI also established its first cyber diplomats in The Hague, Netherlands, with the goal of proactively supporting cyber investigation in tandem with Europol.
Chief officials of the IRS-CI indicate that their branch of the IRS is a leading investigator of tax crimes throughout the United States and globally. Despite the ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 response, IRS-CI agents worked through personal and professional challenges in order to target potential criminals who abused the U.S. tax code for their own personal gain.
Training resources emphasized crime related to cryptocurrency and other cybercrimes involving computer networking and internet-based technologies. This represents a shift in tax fraud crime that requires special agents and dedicated resources, but the CI’s efforts were rewarded with the seizure of over $3.5 billion in cryptocurrency. Additionally, money laundering crimes continue to be an issue worldwide, a challenge that the IRS-CI worked to undercover, investigate, and prosecute through traditional and virtual banking systems and cooperation from international agencies.
IRS-CI Focus On PPP & EIDL Fraud Related To COVID-19
While many working Americans struggled with unemployment, financial losses, and other challenges related to COVID-19, some criminals took advantage of the situation by exploiting paycheck protection plans (PPP) and economic injury disaster loans (EIDL), which were designed to assist small business owners through the COVID-19 crisis by providing potentially forgivable loans. In cooperation with local law enforcement agencies, agents of the IRS-CI targeted these criminals through comprehensive investigations into fraudulent claims, many of which resulted in conviction along with imprisonment or fines.
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When you need legal representation against the IRS, Silver Law PLC is ready to protect your interests. Our Phoenix tax attorneys represent decades of dedication and experience in the field so you can be assured of the highest standards. To discuss your situation, contact us to schedule your confidential consultation.
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