Friday, February 02, 2007

Gypsies, Tramps and [Tax] Thieves? A Federal Judge in Oregon Says No.

NOTE: I have been having some trouble with the new Blogger in posting articles from Accounting Web.

An IRS seizure of over $2 million from gypsy leader and used car businessman Bobbie Ephrem has been overturned with a federal judge saying that there was insufficient proof that the monies represented income to Ephrem or even belonged to him. Attorney Mark Blackman argued that Ephrem belonged to a communal sect of gypsies known as Roma and that much of the money was being held in safekeeping for Ephrem's sister-in-law (gypsies rarely use banks). Part of the problem may have been a dubious IRS informant; a man wanted on murder, assault and narcotics charges.

Looks like this may have been a case where the IRS acted first and asked questions later. Hopefully, some out-of-court settlement can be reached; it wasn't clear that Bobbie was completely on the up-and-up.


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