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Date: 03-25-2021

Case Style:

United States of America v. Thomas O'Connell

Case Number: 4:20-cr-00070-BMM


Court: United States District Court for the District of Montanta (Cascade County)

Plaintiff's Attorney: United States District Attorney’s Office

Defendant's Attorney:

Criminal Defense Lawyer Directory

Description: Great Falls, Montana criminal defense lawyer represented defendant charged with failure to account for and to pay over employment tax.

Thomas O’Connell owned and operated three plumbing businesses, Quality Plumbing and Heating, Orbit Plumbing and Heating, and Orbit PHC, each based in Great Falls. From at least 2005 through 2016, O’Connell did not pay employment taxes for several quarters, despite being obligated to ensure such taxes were paid to the IRS. Instead, he directed payments to other creditors and to his own personal expenses. The total tax loss to the IRS from O’Connell’s conduct is more than $550,000.

O’Connell is scheduled to be sentenced on June 24, 2021, and faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison. He also faces a period of supervised release, restitution, and monetary penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Acting U.S. Attorney Leif M. Johnson for the District of Montana made the announcement.

IRS-Criminal Investigation is investigating the case.

Trial Attorney Mark S. Determan of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan G. Weldon of the District of Montana are prosecuting the case.


Outcome: 03/24/2021 26 MINUTE ENTRY for proceedings held before Judge Brian Morris: CHANGE OF PLEA HEARING for Defendant THOMAS OCONNELL held 3/24/2021: AUSA Jeff Starnes, Retained Counsel James Gardner, and Defendant (not in custody), all present in person. Government outlines Plea Agreement. Defendant S/T. Defendant answers questions from the Court. Information received and Defendant understands charges. Plea Agreement discussed. Defendant satisfied with Gardner. Maximum penalties, constitutional rights and right to a jury trial stated. Sentencing process explained. AUSA Starnes states elements of offense and offer of proof; Defendant w/objections. Allocution; Offer of Proof incorporated. Court grants motion to change plea. Defendant pleads GUILTY to the Information. Court finds Defendant competent, plea knowing and voluntarily made. Court accepts plea. PSR ordered. Sentencing set for June 24, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. Government does not move for continued detention. Court allows Defendant to remain on release, subject to conditions. Hearing commenced at 11:55 a.m. and concluded at 12:32 p.m. (Court Reporter Y. Heinze) (Law Clerk: J. Brothers), (Hearing held in Charles Pray Courtroom, Great Falls, MT) (SLR) (Entered: 03/24/2021)
03/24/2021 27 ORDER as to Thomas O'Connell: Sentencing set for 6/24/2021 at 10:00 AM in Great Falls, MT before Judge Brian Morris. SEE ORDER FOR FULL DETAILS AND DEADLINES. Signed by Judge Brian Morris on 3/24/2021. (SLR) (Entered: 03/24/2021)

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