Union County man convicted of tax evasion and failing to file tax returns


Date: June 7, 2023

Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov

Newark, NJ — A Union County, New Jersey, man was convicted of tax evasion and failing to file personal income tax returns, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger and Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department's Tax Division announced today.

Jonathan D. Michael of Springfield, New Jersey was convicted of one count of tax evasion, from 2014 through 2018, and five counts of failing to file tax returns during the same period. According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Michael worked as a mechanic by a port-operating company in New Jersey. From 2014 through 2018, Michael earned over $1.4 million from the port-operating company. In February 2014, he submitted a Form W-4, "Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate" to his employer in which he falsely claimed to be completely exempt from federal income tax withholding, which caused the employer to stop withholding federal income taxes from his wages. In November 2016, after the IRS sent Michael a notification that he was not entitled to claim exempt status, Michael wrote the company and claimed that his false W-4 was correct. Despite earning income each year over the threshold that would require him to file individual income tax returns, Michael failed to file such tax returns with the IRS for the years 2014 through 2018.

The maximum penalty for tax evasion is five years of in prison; the maximum penalty for failure to file as charged in Counts Two through Six is one year per count.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger and Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Goldberg credited special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Tammy Tomlins in Newark, with the investigation leading to the guilty verdict.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Feldman Nikic of the Cybercrime Unit in Newark and by Trial Attorney Michael C. Vasiliadis of the Tax Division in Washington, D.C.