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Our Victory Against DOJ TAX & IRS

June 28, 2015

We are so pleased to announce that last month we secured another victory for one of our clients — this time against the Department of Justice (DOJ) Criminal Tax Division and IRS — in a federal appellate court. In January, we had told you that a federal district court judge had granted our retrial motion for our client, who was wrongly accused in a criminal tax case. When our client was arrested in August 2013, the DOJ & IRS issued a joint press release announcing his indictment. Our client, a Peruvian immigrant and owner of a construction company, who in good faith had relied on the advice of his accountant, was charged with tax fraud based mainly on that accountant’s testimony. Undeterred, in 2014, we went to trial and our client took the stand in his own defense. At trial, the judge found our client’s testimony more credible than that of the accountant. The judge, in fact, declared that the accountant’s trial testimony was “patently incredible” — in layman’s terms — the accountant lied and lied often. The judge also concluded that federal prosecutors had made “truly fallacious” and “baseless” arguments in their summations that “inflamed the jury and tainted its deliberations” causing them to “stray from the facts” leading to an unjust verdict. The judge held that the verdict against our client constituted a “manifest injustice” and ordered a retrial under Rule 33 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure in order to “avert a miscarriage of justice.” Despite all these problems, the government decided to appeal the judge’s decision to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. After oral arguments on April 15, Tax Day, no less, against the DOJ Criminal Tax Division, the Court of Appeals agreed with us, found the government’s evidence “problematic” and affirmed the judge’s decision granting our motion for a retrial. We refused to let an unjust result against our client stand. We didn’t give up when others did, we fought for him, and achieved what the magazine Law360 called a “rare” victory because of the small number of such cases that prevail on appeal. Read more about this great win for our client here.

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