A 14-month joint investigation has led to a Sullivan man being sentenced to five years probation and ordered to pay restitution to a woman who believed she was investing in his company.
Richard L. Miller, 47, Sullivan, was convicted and sentenced last week after entering a plea relating to three felony counts of filing a false Missouri income tax return and two felony counts of stealing.
The investigation was led by the Missouri Department of Revenue’s Criminal Tax Investigation Bureau and the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department after they learned that Miller had obtained, through deceit, more than $230,000 from a Franklin County woman. The woman was led to believe that she was supplying operating capital for a nonexistent business.
The case was referred to Franklin County Prosecuting Attorney Robert E. Parks who took the case to a Franklin County Grand Jury received an indictment for theft and filing false individual income tax returns for the years 2007-2009. The false returns were related to the fact that the income Miller illegally obtained was not reported on the income tax returns.
Miller appeared in court on October 30 and entered an “Alford Plea” to the charges. An Alford Plea is entered by the defendant that acknowledges that the state has sufficient evidence to prove its case. Miller was sentenced to seven years in prison on the count of stealing or theft in excess of $25,000 and five total years on a lesser stealing charge and the three counts of filing a false tax return.
The sentence was suspended and Miller was placed on five years probation and ordered to pay restitution with a hearing set for December 18, in Franklin County Circuit Court.
“When tax fraud occurs, the Missouri Department of Revenue investigates the crime and works with prosecutors to bring these criminals to justice,” said Department Director Alana M. Barragan-Scott. “Tax cheats and those who financially exploit others will be held accountable for their actions.”