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Unwittingly complicit: Don't be that, warns the IRS

We've referenced in a few recent blog posts the angst that legions of tax filers in Texas and across the country have annually when tax season approaches.

And we note that their fears are both understandable and well-founded. Our December 24 post entry stresses that "faulty tax returns may trigger an investigation into [a filer's] finances or even tax fraud charges."

And that is true even when a materially inaccurate entry or omitted information on a tax return owes entirely to a misinterpretation or a careless mistake.

The IRS, we note in the above-cited blog, is an agency "not known for its flexibility or compassion." It might opt to regard a mistake as a simple error grounded in negligence and be a bit forgiving -- but likely not.

In fact, special agents from the IRS Criminal Investigation (CI) unit are quick to find fraud in such instances. And when they do, the agency pushes hard in probes and enforcement actions that ultimately seek high conviction rates and correspondingly harsh penalties.

This question begs answering: What is the CI's conviction rate in what a recent article calls "abusive tax schemes?"

Here's the unit's self-reported answer, which some people might understandably find a bit chilling if not flatly frightening: 91.5%.

The CI division claims to spend nearly three-quarters of its time and resources looking into tax-related illegalities. That high effort renders it a virtual certainty that the agency hits hard when it thinks it has found one.

Texans facing fraud-based challenges from the IRS need proven legal representation. They can readily secure it by contacting an experienced Houston criminal defense firm that routinely works diligently to promote best-case outcomes for pressured taxpayers.

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