Couple indicted for tax fraud

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 30, 2010

An Andalusia couple has been indicted by a federal grand jury for allegedly conspiring to defraud the U.S. government, tax evasion and filing a false claim for a tax refund.

The indictment, which was returned on Nov. 17 and unsealed earlier this month, states the case against Thomas and Kathy Frye of Andalusia began in 1999 when they submitted IRS forms to their employers that falsely claimed they were exempt from federal income tax. It also alleges the couple also filed false federal income tax returns that understated their income, and that in late 2008, the Fryes filed a false refund claim with the IRS in the amount of $317,990.

When the IRS attempted to collect the back taxes owed by the couple, Thomas Frye submitted false financial instruments to the IRS in purported payment of his and his wife’s tax liability. In one such instrument, Mr. Frye represented to the IRS that the false instrument had a value of $100 billion.

If convicted, Thomas Frye faces a maximum prison sentence of 105 years and Kathy Frye faces a maximum prison sentence of 30 years.

The case was investigated by special agents with the Internal Revenue Service’s criminal

Investigation division. Trial attorneys Charles M. Edgar Jr. and Michael C. Boteler of the United States Department of Justice’s tax division, Southern criminal enforcement section, are prosecuting the case.