Former general counsel of large public company admits tax offenses


Date: April 26, 2024


Newark, NJ — A Morris County, New Jersey, man, and former general counsel for a large public corporation admitted willfully failing to file federal income tax returns, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced today.

John Goggins of Chatham, New Jersey, pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge André M. Espinosa in Newark federal court on April 25, 2024, to a four-count information charging him with willfully failing to file federal income tax returns for tax years 2018 through 2021.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Goggins was a former senior vice-president and general counsel of a large publicly traded corporation. For the years 2018 through 2021, Goggins earned total gross income of $54 million from wages, restricted stock awards, the exercise of annual nonqualified stock options, interest, dividends, and gains from stock sales. Goggins failed to file federal income tax returns for those years.

The willful failure to file tax returns charges each carry a maximum potential penalty of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine, or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense. Any prison sentence imposed on Counts One through Four may run consecutively to each other. Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 6, 2024.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited IRS Criminal Investigation (CI), under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Jenifer L. Piovesan with the investigation leading to the guilty plea.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Shontae D. Gray of the Economic Crimes Unit in Newark, and Trial Attorney Kenneth Vert of the Justice Department’s Tax Division.

CI is the criminal investigative arm of the IRS, responsible for conducting financial crime investigations, including tax fraud, narcotics trafficking, money-laundering, public corruption, healthcare fraud, identity theft and more. CI special agents are the only federal law enforcement agents with investigative jurisdiction over violations of the Internal Revenue Code, obtaining a more than a 90 percent federal conviction rate. The agency has 20 field offices located across the U.S. and 12 attaché posts abroad.