New Problem for Village President

     CHICAGO (CN) – The president of the village of Channahon, which Chicago claims ran an illegal kickback scheme to help businesses dodge Cook County taxes, has been charged with dodging his own taxes.



     Joseph Cook faces a 6-count criminal information accusing him of failing to file federal tax returns for 4 years during which he earned $250,000 from two public jobs and a private consulting business.
     U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald announced the charges on Tuesday.
     Cook is accused of failing to file income tax returns for 2005 through 2008, for his earnings as village president, as a field engineer for Will County and as owner and consultant of Phase One Solutions.
     Prosecutors say he made $69,672 in 2005, $82,542 in 2006, $60,304 in 2007 and $39,066 in 2008.
     Cook, 45, founded Phase One Solutions in 2006 and is its sole owner and consultant.
     He is accused of failing to file corporate income taxes for the company’s gross earnings of $65,210 in 2007 and $42,953 in 2008.
     All six counts are misdemeanors. Each is punishable by up to a year in jail and a $100,000 fine.
     Last week Chicago and the Regional Transit Authority sued Channahonand Kankakee for an alleged kickback scheme involving Chicago based retailers.
     “Kankakee and Channahon have attracted a large number of corporations – and an enormous amount of revenue – by offering Illinois retailers kickbacks of sales tax if they purport to process their retail sales through small offices set up in those municipalities,” the city claimed in its complaint in Cook County Chancery Court.

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