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Case Number: 5:20-cr-00298-DNH
Judge: David N. Hurd
Court: United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York (Oneida County)
Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office
Description: Utica, New York criminal defense lawyers represented Defendants charged with tax evasion.
John Zourdos, his wife Helen Zourdos, and their son Dimitrios Zourdos, all of Rome, New York, operated three Dippin Donuts stores with locations in Rome and New Hartford. From 2013 to 2017, the defendants concealed more than $2.8 million in cash sales from the IRS, and evaded more than $650,000 in individual taxes, by depositing cash directly into their personal bank accounts instead of business bank accounts, providing incomplete information to their accountant and causing their accountant to file false individual and corporate tax returns with the IRS. The defendants also used unreported cash sales to fund a lavish lifestyle that included, among other things, the purchase of multiple luxury vehicles. Evidence at trial further showed that the defendants paid some employees “off the books” cash wages for overtime hours. They paid other employees entirely “off the books” in cash for all hours worked.
John, Helen and Dimitrios Zourdos were each convicted of one count conspiracy to defraud the United States, seven counts of tax evasion, and seven counts of aiding and assisting in the filing of false corporate tax returns. Sentencing hearings for all three defendants will be scheduled at a later date. All face a maximum penalty of five years in prison on each count of conspiracy and tax evasion, and three years in prison on each count of assisting the filing of false tax returns. 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 U.S. Attorney Carla B. Freedman of the Northern District of New York made the announcement.
IRS-Criminal Investigation investigated the case.
Assistant Chief John N. Kane of the Tax Division and Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael F. Perry for the Northern District of New York are prosecuting the case.
18:371.F - CONSPIRACY TO DEFRAUD THE UNITED STATES
26:7201.F - ATTEMPT TO EVADE OR DEFEAT TAX
26:7206B.F - FRAUD AND FALSE STATEMENTS
Outcome: 11/10/2021 TEXT Minute Entry for proceedings held before Judge David N. Hurd in Utica, NY. Jury Trial as John Zourdos, Helen Zourdos, Dimitrios Zourdos held on 11/10/2021. 9:30 Jury continues jury deliberations. Judge Hurd directs that exhibits be submitted to the jury. 2:22pm: Jury Note No. 1, marked Court Exhibit No. 7. 2:45pm: Jury Enters Court. Clerk takes Jury Verdicts. Jury finds Defendants John Zourdos, Helen Zourdos and Dimitiros Zourdos GUILTY as to all Counts 1 through 15 of Indictment 5:20-CR-298. Upon request of defense counsel, Judge Hurd directs that the jury be polled. UPON POLLING BY THE CLERK, AS TO EACH DEFENDANT ON ALL COUNTS, ALL JURORS CONCUR WITH THE VERDICTS AS ANNOUNCED BY THE JURY FOREPERSON AND AS SIGNED BY EACH JUROR ON EACH DEFENDANT'S VERDICT FORM. Verdict Forms handed up and Jury Verdicts are accepted by the Court. Judge Hurd discharges Jury with the thanks of the Court. 3:15pm. Jury Exits Court. Judge Hurd sets deadlines for Rule 29 Motions for Judgment of Acquittal, to be filed by November 24, 2021, response by December 3, 2021, reply by December 12, 2021 and made returnable at 11:00am on December 17, 2021. Judge Hurd orders defendants continued on previously established terms of pretrial release. 3:30pm. Court Adjourned. Court Adjourned. Appearances: John N. Kane, AUSA and Michael F. Perry, AUSA for the Government; David M Garvin, Esq. for defendants John Zourdos and Helen Zourdos, Gabriel M. Nugent, Esq. and David G. Burch, Jr., Esq. for defendant Dimitiros Zourdos. (2:45pm - 3:30pm) (Court Reporter Lisa Mazzei) (ptm) (Entered: 11/10/2021)
11/10/2021 83 REDACTED JURY VERDICT as to John Zourdos (1) Guilty on Count 1,2-8,9-15. (ptm) (Entered: 11/10/2021)
Defendants were found guilty.