CINCINNATI — A used-car salesman who earned up to $1 million each year dodged taxes and skimmed money off the top of his businesses to deceive the IRS, according to federal prosecutors.
George VanDemark, the owner of Used Car Supermarket, was convicted of tax fraud Wednesday in federal court. A jury — spread across the courtroom to practice social distancing — found him guilty on four counts of aiding and assisting in the filing of false income tax returns, one count of structuring transactions to evade the reporting requirements and one count of making a false statement.
According to prosecutors, 64-year-old VanDemark claimed he owed no taxes in 2013 and 2014 despite being a millionaire.
He attempted to enforce the claim by skimming 25% of his business earnings and altering the amount of tax money he owed. When interviewed by IRS agents in 2016, he lied about it.
If he receives the maximum sentence for each of his six charges, VanDemark could spend up to 17 years in federal prison.
“The jury has sent a very strong message to business owners and taxpayers that if you skirt your income tax liabilities, try to avoid the currency reporting requirement and then lie about it, you will be judged guilty for such conduct by a jury of your peers,” IRS investigator Bryant Jackson said in a statement.