The IRS Criminal Investigations Division

June 19, 2023

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is responsible for collecting taxes and enforcing the tax laws of the United States. In addition to its role in collecting taxes, the IRS also conducts criminal investigations to enforce tax laws and prosecute those who engage in tax fraud or other illegal activities related to taxes. In this article, we will explore the process and procedures that the IRS uses to conduct criminal investigations.

What Types of Crimes Does the IRS Investigate?


The IRS investigates a wide range of crimes related to taxes, including tax fraud, tax evasion, money laundering, and other financial crimes. Some of the most common types of tax crimes that the IRS investigates include:

  • Filing false or fraudulent tax returns
  • Concealing income or assets from the IRS
  • Claiming false deductions or credits
  • Engaging in illegal tax shelters or schemes
  • Failing to report all income
  • Failing to pay taxes owed

How Does the IRS Begin a Criminal Investigation?


The IRS begins a criminal investigation when it has reason to believe that a taxpayer has engaged in illegal activities related to taxes. This may be based on a tip from a confidential informant, an analysis of tax returns, or information obtained through an audit or other investigation. Once the IRS has enough evidence to support a criminal investigation, it will refer the case to the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) for further investigation.

What is the Role of the Criminal Investigation Division (CID)?


The CID is the enforcement arm of the IRS, and it is responsible for conducting criminal investigations related to taxes. The CID is staffed by special agents who are trained to investigate tax crimes and financial crimes. Once a case is referred to the CID, the special agents will conduct a thorough investigation, which may include conducting interviews, gathering financial records, and conducting searches and seizures.

How Does the IRS Build a Case?


Building a case for criminal prosecution is a complex and time-consuming process, and the IRS must be able to demonstrate that the taxpayer intended to commit a crime. To build a case, the IRS will gather and analyze a wide range of evidence, including financial records, bank records, and other relevant documentation. The IRS will also interview witnesses, including the taxpayer and any other individuals who may have information related to the case.

What is the Role of the U.S. Attorney’s Office?


Once the IRS has completed its investigation, the case will be referred to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for prosecution. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is responsible for prosecuting federal criminal cases, and it will work with the IRS and other law enforcement agencies to bring the case to court. The U.S. Attorney’s Office will determine whether there is enough evidence to support a criminal prosecution and if so, it will file charges against the taxpayer.

What are the Potential Penalties for Tax Crimes?


The penalties for tax crimes can be severe, and they can include fines, imprisonment, and the forfeiture of assets. The specific penalties will depend on the nature of the crime and the circumstances of the case, but those who are convicted of tax crimes can face significant consequences, including the loss of their professional licenses, the forfeiture of their assets, and the imposition of large fines.

Contact Us for Help in Southern California


If you are under investigation for a tax crime in Southern California, then it’s paramount to speak with an experienced Orange County federal crimes attorney. Contact the Law Offices of John D. Rogers today.

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