La Crescenta man sentenced to six months in federal prison for deliberately underreporting chiropractic practice income


Notice: Historical Content

This is an archival or historical document and may not reflect current law, policies or procedures.

Date: October 15, 2021


LOS ANGELES — A La Crescenta man has been sentenced to six months in federal prison followed by one year probation, for substantially underreporting on his personal income tax returns the money he made over a three-year period from his chiropractic practice, the Internal Revenue Service announced today.

Bum Jin Park was sentenced on Thursday by United States District Judge John F. Walter, who also ordered him to pay $252,764 in restitution and a $10,000 criminal fine. Park pleaded guilty on June 10 to one count of making and subscribing to a false tax return. Park made full payment of the restitution amount prior to his sentencing hearing.

Park, a licensed chiropractor, owned and operated BJ Park Chiropractic in Northridge. Park's business relied heavily on referrals from personal-injury attorneys. These attorneys made payments from their clients settlements with checks made payable to BJ Park Chiropractic for services rendered. But, from 2014 to 2016, Park personally endorsed 425 checks totaling $792,819 and failed to report this as income to the Internal Revenue Service. Park knowingly filed false personal federal income tax returns.

For example, in 2014, Park admitted to cashing checks he received for his chiropractic services in the amount of $272,005 at a check-cashing business, rather than depositing them into his business's bank accounts. Park reported only the checks issued to his business that were deposited into its bank accounts as income on his federal tax returns. Park falsely reported his gross receipts were $94,728 in 2014.

Park engaged in similar behavior for the next two tax years, cashing certain checks for chiropractic services at a check-cashing business instead of depositing them at the bank. As a result, Park underreported his income by tens of thousands of dollars for each tax year from 2014 through 2016. In each instance, Park acted willfully to falsely understate his annual income and minimize his tax liability.

"Business owners a have fiduciary responsibility to follow the law," said IRS-Criminal Investigation Los Angeles Field Office Acting Special Agent in Charge Johnathan E. Smith. "Mr. Park's sentencing sends a clear message that all taxpayers must comply with the law and pay their fair share. Those who fail to do so will be held accountable."

Park was ordered to surrender to the Federal Bureau of Prisons no later than January 10, 2022.

IRS Criminal Investigation investigated this case.

Assistant United States Attorney Maxwell K. Coll and Johnpaul Lecedre of the United States Attorney's Office for the Central District of California prosecuted this matter.