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Internal Revenue Bulletin:  2014-20 

May 12, 2014 

Announcement 2014–20

Announcement of Disciplinary Sanctions from the Office of Professional Responsibility


Table of Contents

The Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) announces recent disciplinary sanctions involving attorneys, certified public accountants, enrolled agents, enrolled actuaries, enrolled retirement plan agents, and appraisers. These individuals are subject to the regulations governing practice before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which are set out in Title 31, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 10, and which are published in pamphlet form as Treasury Department Circular No. 230. The regulations prescribe the duties and restrictions relating to such practice and prescribe the disciplinary sanctions for violating the regulations.

The disciplinary sanctions to be imposed for violation of the regulations are:

Disbarred from practice before the IRS—An individual who is disbarred is not eligible to practice before the IRS as defined at 31 C.F.R. § 10.2(a)(4).

Suspended from practice before the IRS—An individual who is suspended is not eligible to practice before the IRS as defined at 31 C.F.R. § 10.2(a)(4) during the term of the suspension.

Censured in practice before the IRS—Censure is a public reprimand. Unlike disbarment or suspension, censure does not affect an individual’s eligibility to practice before the IRS, but OPR may subject the individual’s future practice rights to conditions designed to promote high standards of conduct.

Monetary penalty—A monetary penalty may be imposed on an individual who engages in conduct subject to sanction or on an employer, firm, or entity if the individual was acting on its behalf and if it knew, or reasonably should have known, of the individual’s conduct.

Disqualification of appraiser—An appraiser who is disqualified is barred from presenting evidence or testimony in any administrative proceeding before the Department of the Treasury or the IRS.

Under the regulations, attorneys, certified public accountants, enrolled agents, enrolled actuaries, and enrolled retirement plan agents may not assist, or accept assistance from, individuals who are suspended or disbarred with respect to matters constituting practice (i.e., representation) before the IRS, and they may not aid or abet suspended or disbarred individuals to practice before the IRS.

Disciplinary sanctions are described in these terms:

Disbarred by decision, Suspended by decision, Censured by decision, Monetary penalty imposed, and Disqualified after hearing—An administrative law judge (ALJ) either 1) granted the government’s summary judgment motion or 2) conducted an evidentiary hearing upon OPR’s complaint alleging violation of the regulations; and 3) issued a decision imposing one of these sanctions. After 30 days from the issuance of the decision, in the absence of an appeal, the ALJ’s decision became the final agency decision.

Disbarred by default decision, Suspended by default decision, Censured by default decision, Monetary penalty imposed by default decision, and Disqualified by default decision—An ALJ, after finding that no answer to OPR’s complaint had been filed, granted OPR’s motion for a default judgment and issued a decision imposing one of these sanctions.

Disbarment by decision on appeal, Suspended by decision on appeal, Censured by decision on appeal, Monetary penalty imposed by decision on appeal, and Disqualified by decision on appeal—The decision of the ALJ was appealed to the agency appeal authority, acting as the delegate of the Secretary of the Treasury, and the appeal authority issued a decision imposing one of these sanctions.

Disbarred by consent, Suspended by consent, Censured by consent, Monetary penalty imposed by consent, and Disqualified by consent—In lieu of a disciplinary proceeding being instituted or continued, an individual offered a consent to one of these sanctions and OPR accepted the offer. Typically, an offer of consent will provide for: suspension for an indefinite term; conditions that the individual must observe during the suspension; and the individual’s opportunity, after a stated number of months, to file with OPR a petition for reinstatement affirming compliance with the terms of the consent and affirming current eligibility to practice (i.e., an active professional license or active enrollment status).

Suspended indefinitely by decision in expedited proceeding, Suspended indefinitely by default decision in expedited proceeding, Suspended by consent in expedited proceeding—OPR instituted an expedited proceeding for suspension (based on certain limited grounds, including loss of a professional license for cause, and criminal convictions).

OPR has authority to disclose the grounds for disciplinary sanctions in these situations: (1) an ALJ or the Secretary’s delegate on appeal has issued a decision on or after September 26, 2007, which was the effective date of amendments to the regulations that permit making such decisions publicly available; (2) the individual has settled a disciplinary case by signing OPR’s “consent to sanction” form, which requires consenting individuals to admit to one or more violations of the regulations and to consent to the disclosure of the individual’s own return information related to the admitted violations (for example, failure to file Federal income tax returns); or (3) OPR has issued a decision in an expedited proceeding for indefinite suspension.

Announcements of disciplinary sanctions appear in the Internal Revenue Bulletin at the earliest practicable date. The sanctions announced below are alphabetized first by the names of states and second by the last names of individuals. Unless otherwise indicated, section numbers (e.g., § 10.51) refer to the regulations.

City & State Name Professional Designation Disciplinary Sanction Effective Date(s)
California        
 Sierra Madre Libman, Arnold CPA   Reinstated to practice before the IRS, effective December 16, 2013
Florida        
 Riverview Middleton, Tyree Unenrolled Return Preparer Suspended by consent (stipulated order in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida) Indefinite from December 10, 2013
Kentucky        
 Lexington Milslagle, Mark J. CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under 31 C.F.R. § 10.82 (convicted in Kentucky state court (KRS 516.030), forgery, 2nd degree) Indefinite from March 24, 2014
New Jersey        
 Plainfield Armbrister, John Enrolled Agent Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under 31 C.F.R. § 10.82 (conviction under 26 U.S.C. § 7202, willful failure to collect/pay over tax) Indefinite from November 4, 2013
New York        
 New York Cummins, Virgil M. Enrolled Agent Suspended by decision (failure to file Federal income tax returns for tax years 2009–2010, and failure to timely file a Federal income tax return for tax year 2011, (31 C.F.R. § 10.51(a)(6)), Indefinite from January 30, 2014  
 Highland Pezzo, John J. CPA Disbarred by decision of IRS Appellate Authority (failure to file Federal income tax return (Form 1040) for tax years 2008–2010; failure to file an S Corporation Federal income tax return (Form 1120S) for tax years 2007–2011; failure file Federal employment tax return (Form 940) for tax years 2008–2011; failure to file employer’s quarterly Federal tax return (Form 941) on behalf of his firm for ten quarters in tax years 2008–2011; failure to respond to requests from IRS (31 C.F.R. § 10.20(b)); and failure to use Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) on returns and claims for refund during 2012 (31 C.F.R § 10.51(a)(17) Indefinite from January 17, 2014  
 Rye Brook Shapiro, Richard Attorney   Reinstated to practice before the IRS, effective February 22, 2014  
 New Hartford Turynowicz, Steven CPA Suspended by decision in expedited proceeding under 31 C.F.R. § 10.82 (conviction under 26 U.S.C. § 7206(2), preparation and presentation of a false income tax return) Indefinite from December 16, 2013  
Maryland          
 Timonium Jacob, Felix CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under 31 C.F.R. § 10.82 (conviction under 26 U.S.C. § 7206(2), aiding and assisting the preparation of a false income tax return, and 26 U.S.C. § 7203, failure to file individual tax return) Indefinite from January 6, 2014  
Pennsylvania          
 Huntingdon Valley Glick, Dennis CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under 31 C.F.R. § 10.82 (conviction under 26 U.S.C. § 7212(a), corruptly endeavoring to obstruct and impede the due administration of the internal revenue laws, and 26 U.S.C. § 7206(2), aiding and abetting the preparation and filing of false tax returns) Indefinite from February 22, 2014  
Virginia          
 Warrenton Dibble, David Enrolled Agent Suspended by consent (willfully failing to make, or failing to file timely US individual income tax return, for tax years 2007–2010, and 2012; willfully evading or attempting to evade payments of Federal income taxes for tax years 2006–2012; willfully failing to file, or failing to file timely employer’s quarterly Federal employment tax returns for all quarters for tax years 2006, 2nd–4th quarters of tax year 2007, the 1st, 2nd and 4th quarters of 2008, and 1st–3rd quarters of tax year 2009; willfully failing to file, or failing to file timely, US income tax return for an S Corporation for tax years 2006–2009; willfully evading quarterly Federal employment and tax payments for 4th quarter of 2005, all quarters of 2006–2007, 1st, 2nd and 4th quarters of 2008, and 1st–3rd quarters of 2009; willfully evading payments of Federal unemployment taxes for tax years 2007–2009; and willfully evading assessment of Federal individual income taxes for tax years 2007–2010 (31 C.F.R. § 10.51(a)(6)); Practice rights indefinitely suspended for 48 months from February 6, 2014 (reinstatement with conditions); PTIN revocation indefinite from 04/24/14  
 Warrenton (continued) Dibble, David Enrolled Agent knowingly providing false and misleading information to the Department of the Treasury in connection with a pending matter, that is, OPR’s investigation of reports concerning his misconduct (31 C.F.R. § 10.51(a)(4)); and willfully preparing all or substantially all of, or signing the tax returns or claims for refund of others when his PTIN was not current for tax years 2011–2012 (31 C.F.R. § 10.51(a)(17))    

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