Chat with an FTB Representative

Tax News
Criminal Corner

Former San Diego Woman Pleads Guilty to Grand Theft, State Income Tax Evasion

A former resident of San Diego pleaded guilty to one felony count of grand theft with an enhancement for taking more than $150,000 and one felony count of state income tax evasion, the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) said.

Diane Winters, 43, now resides in Arkansas. During the years 2002 – 2005, Winters was employed as a payroll manager for a real estate management firm. According to court records, Winters embezzled more than $233,000 from her employer during these same years. In addition, she failed to report the embezzled funds on her state income tax returns for 2002 and 2003 and failed to file her 2004 and 2005 tax returns to report either her wages or the embezzled funds. All income is taxable including income from illegal sources.

Winters sentencing and restitution hearing is scheduled for April 6. Winters owes the State more than $45,000 in unpaid tax, penalties, interest, and the cost of the investigation.

The failure to file tax returns is part of the $6.5 billion tax gap California faces each year. The tax gap is defined as the difference.

San Diego Superior Court Judge Michael T. Smyth presided over the case yesterday in Department 30 of the San Diego County Superior Court Central Courthouse. Deputy District Attorney Christine Ryan of the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case. This was a joint investigation between the San Diego County District Attorney’s office and FTB.

Sacramento Bookkeeper Pleads to Grand Theft, State Income Tax Fraud

A Sacramento woman pleaded no contest to grand theft with an enhancement for taking more than $150,000 and filing a false state income tax return, the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) said.

Donna Joe Goodenough, 46, was employed as a bookkeeper for a Sacramento based company that provides 24-hour assistance to people with developmental disabilities. According to court documents, Goodenough abused her position of trust by embezzling more than $224,000 from the company by writing fraudulent checks and charging personal expenses on the company credit card. The thefts occurred from January 2007 through May 2008. In addition, Goodenough failed to report the more than $177,000 she embezzled in 2007 on her state income tax return. All income is taxable including income from illegal sources.

Goodenough’s sentencing is scheduled for April 20, 2009, at 1:30 p.m. Goodenough faces three years and four months in state prison as well as paying restitution to her former employer and FTB. The amount of restitution will be announced as part of her sentencing.

Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Judy Hersher presided over today’s proceeding in Department 63. Deputy District Attorney Robert Clancey of the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case.