Orange County house flipper found guilty of filing false federal tax returns that omitted more than 2 million dollars of income


Date: March 31, 2022


A federal jury has found an Orange County real estate investor who successfully flipped foreclosed homes guilty of three federal criminal tax charges, the Justice Department announced today.

John W. Rampello, of Santa Ana, was found guilty on Wednesday afternoon of two counts of subscribing to a false individual income tax return and one count of aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false individual income tax return.

United States District Judge David O. Carter has scheduled a June 27 sentencing hearing, at which time Rampello will face a statutory maximum sentence of nine years in federal prison.

According to evidence presented at his seven-day trial, Rampello, along with his business partners, was an established and successful property flipper of foreclosed homes in Orange County since the mid-1990s. During the tax years 2014 through 2016, Rampello and his partners flipped approximately 170 homes and defendant's portion of the profits was approximately $2.1 million.

Rampello and his business partners kept detailed records of their property flip activities, including the profits Rampello made on each property. But Rampello concealed this information from his income tax return preparers and did not tell them that he was involved in the property flipping business.

As a result of his omission of his property flipping income from his 2014, 2015, and 2016 individual income tax returns, Rampello underreported his federal income taxes by hundreds of thousands of dollars.

IRS Criminal Investigation investigated this matter.

Assistant United States Attorney James C. Hughes of the Major Frauds Section and Assistant United States Attorney Brett A. Sagel of the Santa Ana Branch Office are prosecuting this case.

This case was the result of a whistleblower. If you have information on tax law violations, please provide it to IRS Whistle Blower Office.