Security guard company Superior Protection Inc. and four of its executives were indicted for failing to pay employment taxes and other charges.
A grand jury indicted the company for conspiracy to defraud the United States of employment taxes, bribery, failure to pay prevailing wages, tax evasion, filing false tax returns and causing a firearm to be present in a federal court facility. Also indicted were company president John Heard; two executives identified as controller and/or CFO, Gary Lambert and John Bailey; and operations manager William Lane.
According to the indictment, Heard failed to pay employment taxes totaling more than $5.7 million since 1987. Heard and Lambert allegedly opened and closed companies and used the names of fictitious people on corporate documents and forms filed with the IRS in an effort to impede the IRS. Heard, Lambert and Bailey also allegedly filed false tax returns that significantly overstated the amount of employment taxes that had been paid by their security companies, including SPI. The indictment also charges John Bailey with four counts of willfully making and subscribing to false employer’s quarterly tax returns that he submitted for SPI.
Some of the executives have also been accused of failing to provide required firearms training to guards, failing to pay the guards correctly, and offering gratuities and bribes to a government official in exchange for favorable treatment in bids for government contracts.
The indictment further alleges that the company routinely failed to pay overtime, prevailing wages and other benefits to the security guards as required under federal contracts.
Each of the two conspiracy counts and each of the two tax evasions counts against Heard carries a maximum of five years' imprisonment upon conviction. Heard and Lane face a maximum punishment of 15 years' imprisonment upon conviction of the bribery charge. The gratuity and firearms charges each carry a maximum sentence of two years’ imprisonment. Bailey faces up to three years’ imprisonment on each of the four counts of filing a false return upon conviction. Each of the 11 charges alleged in the indictment also carries a maximum $250,000 fine upon conviction. Arraignment has been set for October 22.
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