WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today announced the release of its IRS Criminal Investigation (CI) annual report, reflecting significant accomplishments and enforcement actions taken in fiscal year 2015. Focusing on tax-related identity theft, money laundering, public corruption, cybercrime and terrorist financing, IRS CI initiated 3,853 cases in FY 2015.

″Our criminal investigators continue to bring complex and meaningful cases that have a significant impact on tax administration”, said John Koskinen, IRS Commissioner. ″This work also plays an important deterrent effect on would-be criminals, helping ensure fairness for taxpayers and protecting voluntary compliance in our tax system. The report is a tribute to the important work done by IRS Criminal Investigation”.

″This report reflects the extremely high level of commitment that CI agents bring to the job and the great case work accomplished in the past year”, said Richard Weber, Chief, IRS Criminal Investigation. ″But the story that the report tells this year is that fewer agents do mean fewer cases. I‘m extremely proud of all that we accomplished in spite of our budget challenges, but the inability to hire is really taking a toll”.

The annual report is released each year for the purpose of highlighting the agency‘s successes while providing a historical snapshot of the make-up and priorities of the organization. The very first Chief of IRS CI, Elmer Lincoln Irey, served from 1919 to 1946 and envisioned releasing such a document each year to showcase the agency‘s work. CI is the only federal law enforcement agency with jurisdiction over federal tax crimes. This year, CI again boasted the highest conviction rate in all of federal law enforcement— 93.2%.

CI is routinely called upon by prosecutors across the country to be the lead financial investigative agency on a wide variety of financial crimes including international tax evasion, identity theft and transnational organized crime.

″While our highest priority is to enforce the nation‘s tax laws, we cannot underestimate the deterrent effect we are having on would-be criminals and the impact we are having on tax administration”, said Weber. ″I‘m certain that a majority of Americans who follow the law would tell you that they want consequences for those who do not”.

CI investigates potential criminal violations of the Internal Revenue Code and related financial crimes in a manner to foster confidence in the tax system and compliance with the law. The 50-page report summarizes a wide variety of IRS CI activity throughout the fiscal year and includes case summaries on a range of tax crimes, money laundering, public corruption, terrorist financing and narcotics trafficking financial crimes.

The cases in this year's report represent the diversity and complexity of CI investigations. They touch almost every part of the world and were again some of the most successful in the history of CI. In May, indictments were unsealed in the FIFA investigation, a case that continues to this day. At the time, the investigation involved coordination with police agencies and governments in 33 countries and was one of the most complicated international white-collar cases in recent memory. Ross Ulbricht, the creator and owner of the ″Silk Road” website, was sentenced to life in prison and ordered to forfeit more than $183 million. A Michigan man, Dr. Farid Fata was sentenced to 540 months in prison and ordered to forfeit $17 million for his role in a health care fraud scheme. Fata purposefully misdiagnosed people with cancer, pumping their bodies with chemotherapy that they did not need, in order to get rich.

″I‘m proud of IRS-CI and the reputation that this agency has as the best financial investigators in the world. We have a long and storied history and we continue to write new chapters to that history each year,” said Weber. ″Regardless of our budget situation, I am proud that we have not lost sight of our impact or mission and that the quality of our cases remains high”.

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Upcoming Tax Dates

February 10 — Social security, Medicare, and withheld income tax
File Form 941 for the fourth quarter of 2017. This due date applies only if you deposited the tax for the quarter timely, properly, and in full.

February 10 — Certain small employers
File Form 944 to report social security and Medicare taxes and withheld income tax for 2017. This due date applies only if you deposited the tax for the year timely, properly, and in full.

February 10 — Farm employers
File Form 943 to report social security and Medicare taxes and withheld income tax for 2017. This due date applies only if you deposited the tax for the year timely, properly, and in full.

February 10 — Federal unemployment tax
File Form 940 for 2017. This due date applies only if you deposited the tax for the year timely, properly, and in full.

February 10 — Employees who work for tips
If you received $20 or more in tips during January, report them to your employer Details

February 15 — All businesses
Give annual information statements to recipients of certain payments you made during 2017 Details

February 15 — Social security, Medicare, and withheld income tax
If the monthly deposit rule applies, deposit the tax for payments in January.

February 15 — All employers
Begin withholding income tax from the pay of any employee who claimed exemption from withholding in 2017, but did not give you Form W4 to continue the exemption this year.

February 15 — Individuals
If you claimed exemption from income tax withholding last year on the Form W-4, you must file a new Form W-04 by this date to continue your exemption for another year Details

February 19 — Everyone
Federal Holiday (Washington's Birthday) Details

February 28 — All businesses
File information returns (for example, Forms 1099) for certain payments you made during 2017.

February 28 — Payers of gambling winnings.
File Form 1096 along with Copy A of all the Forms W2G you issued for 2017. If you file Forms W2G electronically, your due date for filing them with the IRS will be extended to 03-31. The due date for giving the recipient these forms remains 01-31.

February 28 — All employers
File Form W3, Transmittal of Wage and Tax Statements, along with Copy A of all the Forms W2 you issued for 2017. If you file Forms W2 electronically, your due date for filing them with the SSA will be extended to 03-31. The due date for giving the recipient these forms remains 01-31.

February 28 — Large food and beverage establishment employers
File Form 8027, Employer's Annual Information Return of Tip Income and Allocated Tips. Use Form 8027T, Transmittal of Employer's Annual Information Return of Tip Income and Allocated Tips, to summarize and transmit Forms 8027 if you have more than one establishment. If you file Forms 8027 electronically, your due date for filing them with the IRS will be extended to 03-31.

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