- Days left

Biggest Tax Cheaters of the Past Decade

×
With 30 percent of an average American's income going toward federal and state taxes, it's no wonder that some people cheat on their taxes. The $4.5 trillion that Americans pay in federal and state taxes is more than they will spend on food, clothing and housing combined, according to the Tax Foundation.

Tax Freedom Day -- the day when taxpayers will have worked enough to pay their taxes for the year -- was April 21, 2014. If federal borrowing is taken into account, that date was May 6, according to the foundation. That's a long time to start earning income for yourself. Some tax cheaters, especially the biggest cheaters, don't want to wait that long. They file fake tax returns, don't file and just plain lie to avoid paying taxes.

In fiscal 2013, the IRS increased criminal investigations related to identity theft by 66 percent from the previous year. Sentencing almost doubled to 438 cases, with prison terms ranging from two months to 317 months. Twenty-six years in prison is a lot of time to think about how being honest with the IRS might be more worthwhile.

Here are the worst and most widely known tax cheaters during the past decade who aren't celebrities, a group that's in a whole other world when it comes to avoiding taxes. The list isn't comprehensive because the Internal Revenue Service and Department of Justice don't publish lists of criminals with the highest tax bills.


A former newspaper journalist, Aaron Crowe is a freelance writer who specializes in personal finance, real estate and insurance for various websites, including Wisebread, insurance websites, MortgageLoan.com and AOL.

More from Aaron Crowe


Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Introduction to Retirement Funds

Target date funds help you maintain a long term portfolio.

View Course »

Advice for Recent College Grads

Prepare yourself for the "real world".

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Amending Your Income Tax Return

What if you've sent in your income tax return for a previous year and then discover you made a mistake? You can make things right by filing an amended tax return. And, don't think an amended return will automatically cost you money; it's perfectly okay to change a return to capture a tax break you missed the first time around.

How to File Taxes with IRS Form 1099-MISC

If you receive tax form 1099-MISC for services you provide to a client as an independent contractor and the annual payments you receive total $400 or more, you'll need to file your taxes a little differently than a taxpayer who only receives regular employment income reported on a W-2.

What If I Did Not File My State Taxes?

At the time of this writing, the only states that do not charge a state income tax are Alaska, Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington and Wyoming. If you live or earn money in one of the other 41 states or the District of Columbia, you may need to file a state income tax return by April 15. It is a separate and independent requirement from filing your federal tax return and failure to file it on time may result in interest and penalty charges.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum

131 Comments

Filter by:
fakeconomics01

Why single out Madoff? there are thousands and thousands of them - let us start investigating with members of congress

March 16 2015 at 10:33 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jdykbpl45

Re runs?

March 16 2015 at 6:38 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to jdykbpl45's comment
fakeconomics01

Of course. AOL and DF found a way to piss-off bloggers and they have to steal some posts from last year

March 16 2015 at 10:34 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jdykbpl45

Tim Geithner?

May 09 2014 at 4:48 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
larry_brown59

REMEMBER YOUR STRUGGLES The writer is a Black man. The writer has been a fighter his whole life, for the position in which he mentally resides, upon the moralities and principles of and for, which this great country, THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, was conceived and still stands. The writer loves and is willing to die for what this country holds and cherishes most, the Constitution and the freedoms for which it offers. Freedom is the most precious thing to the AMERICAN PEOPLE. The First Amendment of the Constitution guarantees, free speech. When such freedoms and liberties are breached, in any measurement, Americans are at serious risk. What occurred to Mr. Sterling is nothing more than a POLITICALLY INSPIRED RUPTURE OF SUCH LIBERTY, produced by political out-cries, which can only be found in the backlashing of communal mawkishness, whose actions, are more imprudent than the comments made by Mr. Sterling, which should harvest thoughtfulness. The writer is coming out today to say to his fellow Americans, of all colors, ethnic type, gay or straight, that the writer is supporting Clipper owner Donald Sterling. So the question ascends why would the writer, a black man, support Donald Sterling? Laconically, the right to free speech, without any supporting rupture of the law to that speech, is protected under and by the law. The question becomes, does the punishment given to Mr. Sterling, fit his crime? Wait a minute, the oxymoron of this entire equation is, Mr. Sterling has only committed one crime and that crime is against himself, self-ignorant compartmentalized statements. Let Mr. Sterling deal with his own punishment, should he be punished at all. He has committed no wrong doing.

Larry D Brown. Writer of SERIOSITY THE REAL AUDACITY OF HOPE

May 07 2014 at 1:35 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
James

no party excuses either

April 22 2014 at 1:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
James

the madeoffs and other bad people need a stick witerpentin on it shoved up there arses to remind them they are to be punished wih all there rights taken away no excuses

April 22 2014 at 1:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
James

bad people

April 22 2014 at 1:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tom Wilson

irq.hide555
unitedpaintings, Hi shut-in. How's tricks?

Tom "perhaps" with a question mark? You mean you're not sure.
******** That's correct. It's not apparent there exists help for narcissist.

April 22 2014 at 11:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
alfrankenfool

Jimbo is a pretend pilot, he really works handling baggage.

April 22 2014 at 7:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Robert C Miller

Don`t forget Al Sharpton owes $1.2 million in back taxes. Why doesn`t Harry Reid send vicious dogs, snipers, and federal agents to Sharpton`s front porch to collect it?

April 22 2014 at 5:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply