Many of the 19 former tax professionals facing trial over the sale of KPMG tax shelters, whose legality has been questioned by the federal government, have asked for the dismissal of the charges in a variety of joint motions.More than 25 motions were filed in Manhattan's U.S. District Court, several requesting that the charges against the professionals be dropped entirely, as no court has ever actually ruled the shelters to be illegal. Many additional motions asked for the dismissal of charges because the defendants said that they were being unfairly singled out from other KPMG officials who sold similar shelters.
Other defendant motions complained of prosecutorial misconduct, and a senior former KPMG partner, Jeffrey Eischeid, submitted internal KPMG documents to support his claim that KPMG management approved the shelter sales.
In October, a New York federal grand jury charged each of the 19 defendants with at least 39 counts of tax evasion and a single count of conspiracy to defraud the Internal Revenue Service. The grand jury also charged three of the defendants with obstructing government investigations, and one with evading his personal income taxes.
The case is the largest criminal tax case ever filed by the government. In August, KPMG agreed to pay $456 million to avoid prosecution over its sale of abusive tax shelters.
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