The government said Stone and his wife used a corporate entity to avoid paying taxes and to “fund a lavish lifestyle.”
(CN) — The Justice Department on Friday filed a civil lawsuit against former President Donald Trump longtime ally Roger Stone, alleging he and his wife owe nearly $2 million in unpaid taxes.
The 18-page federal complaint, filed in the Southern District of Florida in Ft. Lauderdale, claims Stone and his wife Nydia Stone underpaid about $1.5 million in taxes between 2007 and 2011 and $407,000 in 2018. The DOJ alleges the couple set up a corporate entity called Drake Ventures to avoid paying taxes.
“The Stones caused numerous checks naming Roger Stone as payee to be deposited into Drake Ventures’ accounts,” the complaint states. “They also transferred funds from their personal bank accounts to Drake Ventures’ accounts. The total of these checks and wire transfers for the years 2018 and 2019 exceeds $1 million. By depositing and transferring these funds into the Drake Ventures’ accounts instead of their personal accounts, the Stones evaded and frustrated the IRS’s collection efforts.”
The lawsuit claims the couple used the bank accounts of Drake Ventures “to pay a substantial amount of their personal expenses, including groceries, dentist bills, spas, salons, clothing and restaurant expenses.”
“Although they used funds held in Drake Ventures accounts to pay some of their taxes, the Stones’ use of Drake Ventures to hold their funds allowed them to shield their personal income from enforced collection and fund a lavish lifestyle despite owing nearly $2 million in unpaid taxes, interest and penalties,” the complaint states.
“The Internal Revenue Service is well aware of the fact that my three-year battle for freedom against the corrupted Mueller investigation has left me destitute,” Stone said in an interview with the Associated Press. “They’re well aware that I have no assets and that their lawsuit is politically motivated. It’s particularly interesting that my tax attorneys were not told of this action, filed at close of business on a Friday. The American people will learn, in court, that I am on the verge of bankruptcy and that there are no assets for the government to take.”
Stone was convicted last year of lying to Congress, witness tampering and obstructing the House investigation into Trump campaign ties with Russia. Trump commuted Stone’s sentence and pardoned him of the conviction. He had previously served as Trump’s campaign adviser.
During the 2016 campaign, Stone said he communicated with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange as the group released over 19,000 hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee, but has denied any wrongdoing.