(Chicago) A West Town scrap metal company that admitted to federal tax and currency transaction charges was ordered Thursday to pay a $2.1 million fine.
Tri State Metal was charged with one count of obstructing and endeavoring to obstruct and impede the IRS, and one count of structuring cash transactions less than $10,000, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.
The company at 1745 W. Fulton St. pleaded guilty and was sentenced Thursday in federal court to pay the maximum fine of more than $2.1 million, federal prosecutors said in a statement.
Tri State will also pay more than $580,000 in restitution to the IRS, and will forfeit more than $1.9 million, the statement said.
The charges were the first resulting from an ongoing investigation by the IRS into cash transactions in the local scrap metal industry.
Prosecutors claimed that between September 2008 and September 2012, the company cashed more than $6.41 million in checks drawn on its bank account and payable to fictitious people, prosecutors said. The company then used the cash to pay vendors and employee wages.
The company also provided cash for the personal benefit of its deceased owner and president, who is not named in the charges.
The transactions were intended to help the company understate income on federal tax returns, according to the feds.
Additionally, the company filed false federal corporate income tax returns for 2009, 2010, and 2011 that understated gross sales by more than $2.92 million, according to the statement.
It also failed to report about $840,720 in cash spending for the benefit of the deceased owner, according to the statement.
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